Kliniken & Institute … Institute Heidelberger Institut… Groups & Projects Working Groups Epidemiology and… Research Cancer epidemiology … Laryngeal cancer…

Determining survival rates of laryngeal cancer patients taking lifestyle factors into account

Project team: Heiko Becher, Heribert Ramroth, Irene Santi, Elisabeth Rudolph, Sami Chenoudi

External collaborators:
PD Dr. Odilia Popanda, DKFZ Heidelberg
Dr. Gerhard Dyckhoff, Prof. Peter Plinkert, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, University of Heidelberg
Prof. Burkhard Lippert, Klaus Feist, Medical Hospital, Head and Neck Surgery, Heilbronn
Prof. Klaus Wolfgang Delank, Dr. Klaus Scheuermann, Medical Hospital, Head and Neck Surgery, Ludwigshafen
Dr. Gerald Baier, Dr. Ingo Ott, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Academic Teaching Hospital, Darmstadt

Funding:  Dietmar-Hopp Stiftung

Funding period:  1.3.2011 - 28.2.2013

Status: completed

During the recent years, the incidence of laryngeal cancer was relatively stable with about 160,000 new cases per year. The disease predominantly affects men; hence the age-standardised incidence rate varies strongly between the sexes, with 5.1 and 0.6 new cases per 100,000 per year, respectively. In men, laryngeal cancer comprises about 2.4% of all cancer cases and 2.1% of all cancer deaths worldwide. In Germany, about 4.000 new cases of laryngeal cancer are diagnosed every year, causing more than 1.500 deaths. While the age-standardised incidence and mortality rates in men slowly decreased during the recent years, the rates in women rather increased.

The most important risk factors for laryngeal cancer are the lifestyle factors tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption, while there are also occupational substances like asbestos, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, dust and solvents, promoting the development of laryngeal cancer. There is some evidence for an influence of genetic factors, as people with a family history of head and neck cancer were shown to have an increased risk of developing laryngeal cancer.

Despite this knowledge, it is not well determined up to which extent survival time after diagnosis of laryngeal cancer is influenced by the above mentioned factors [Publications RNL]. Five-year overall survival of all Europeans diagnosed with laryngeal cancer between 1995 and 1999 was 55%, slightly worse than survival rates for the German population (59%). There is a variety of interacting factors, presumed to predict survival after diagnosis of head and neck cancers [1].

Considering the variety of the previously mentioned factors, multivariate models are needed to gain insight into this complex relation. The aim of this study is to analyse results from a multivariate analysis in a German patient cohort diagnosed with laryngeal cancer.


[1] Rudolph E, Dyckhoff G, Becher H, Dietz A & Ramroth H: Effects of tumour stage, comorbidity and therapy on survival of laryngeal cancer patients: a systematic review and a meta-analysis. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2011; 268(2):165-79.