Publication Abstract

Authors: Cummings LC, Kou TD, Schluchter MD, Chak A, Cooper GS

Title: Outcomes after endoscopic versus surgical therapy for early esophageal cancers in an older population.

Journal: Gastrointest Endosc 84(2):232-240.e1

Date: 2016 Aug

Abstract: BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Endoscopic treatment of early esophageal cancer provides an alternative to esophagectomy, which older patients may not tolerate. Population-based data regarding short-term outcomes and recurrence after endoscopic treatment for esophageal cancer are limited. We compared short-term outcomes, treated recurrence, and survival after endoscopic versus surgical therapy for early esophageal cancers in an older population. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study identifying patients aged ≥66 years with Tis or T1a tumors without nodal involvement diagnosed from 1994 to 2011 from the linked Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER)-Medicare database. RESULTS: Of 2193 patients, 41% (n = 893) underwent esophagectomy, and 12% (n = 255) underwent endoscopic treatment within 6 months of diagnosis. Those treated endoscopically were older and more likely to have a Charlson comorbidity score ≥2. A composite endpoint, hospitalization and/or adverse events at 60 days, was higher in surgical patients than in the endoscopic treatment group (30% vs 12%; P < .001). In a Cox model stratified by histology, adjusting for other factors, endoscopic treatment was associated with improved 2-year survival (hazard ratio 0.51; 95% CI, 0.36-0.73). CONCLUSIONS: In this older population, a composite short-term endpoint was worse in the surgical group. Endoscopic treatment was associated with improved survival through 2 years. These results suggest that endoscopic treatment is a reasonable approach for early esophageal cancers in the elderly.