Treating Nasal Melanoma

Sinonasal cancer survival better with endoscopic resection

(RxWiki News) You probably think of melanoma as a form of skin cancer - the worst kind. You're correct. But melanoma is also a rare type of cancer involving the nasal passage and nearby sinuses (sinonasal).

A recent study showed that people whose nasal cancer was surgically removed using an endoscope (specially equipped tube) lived longer than people who received other forms of surgery.

"Research the type of surgery being performed on you."

Researchers from University College London looked at the factors and different types of treatment that influenced how long someone with sinonasal melanoma lived.

The records of 115 people were examined and analyzed. The average age of those studied was about 66 years old.

All of the patients had undergone surgery to remove the cancer, and 31 had their tumors removed with endoscopy, which uses a tube that's equipped with a light, camera and cutting tools.

Just under half of the patients - 51 - also received radiotherapy as part of their treatment for this highly unusual form of head and neck cancer.

Following treatment, 28 percent of participants were alive after five years. About 24 percent of these individuals were alive and disease-free after five years.

The disease was controlled in its original site for a median (middle) of 21 months, and five-year disease control was about 28 (27.7) percent.

Those who had received endoscopic surgery showed what the author's called "a significant overall survival advantage up to 5 years."

Radiation therapy didn't help control the disease, nor did it extend life.

This study was published in the July issue of Rhinology.

No financial information was publicly available.

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Review Date: 
August 19, 2012