BACKGROUND: An increased tumor volume threshold (< 2.5 ml) is suggested to define insignificant prostate cancer (iPCa).
We hypothesize that an increasing tumor volume within iPCa patients increases the risk of biochemical recurrence (BCR) after radical prostatectomy (RP).
METHODS: We relied on RP patients treated between 1992 and 2008. Multivariable Cox regression analyses predicting BCR within patients harboring favorable pathological characteristics (≤ pT2, pN0/Nx, Gleason 3 + 3). Kaplan-Meier analysis was performed for BCR-free survival within iPCa patients (≤ pT2, pN0/Nx, Gleason 3 + 3, tumor volume: < 0.5 vs. 0.5-2.49 ml).
RESULTS: From 1,829 patients, 141 (7.7%) and 310 (16.9%) harbored iPCa (tumor volume: < 0.5 vs. 0.5-2.49 ml), respectively. Of those, 21 (14.9%) versus 31 (10.0%) had PSA >10 ng/ml. Tumor volume achieved independent predictor status for BCR. Specifically, iPCa patients with increasing tumor volume (0.5-2.49 ml) were at higher risk of BCR after RP than those with tumor volume < 0.5 ml (HR: 8.8, 95% CI: 1.2-65.9, P = 0.04). Kaplan-Meier analysis recorded superior BCR-free survival in iPCa patients with lower tumor volume (< 0.5 ml) (log-rank P = 0.009). The 10-year cancer-specific death rate was 0 versus 0.5%.
CONCLUSIONS: Contemporary iPCa definition incorporates intermediate and high-risk patients (PSA: 10-20 and >20 ng/ml). Despite most favorable pathological characteristics, iPCa patients are not devoid of BCR after RP. Moreover, iPCa patients were at higher risk of BCR, when increasing tumor volume up to 2.49 ml was at play. Taken together the contemporary concept of iPCa is suboptimal. Especially, an increased tumor volume threshold for defining iPCa cannot be recommended according to our data. Clinicians might take these considerations into account during decision-making process.
Schiffmann J, Connan J, Salomon G, Boehm K, Beyer B, Schlomm T, Tennstedt P, Sauter G, Karakiewicz PI, Graefen M, Huland H. Are you the author?
Martini-Clinic, Prostate Cancer Center, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.
Reference: Prostate. 2014 Oct 4. Epub ahead of print.