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Abstract

Background

The aim of our study was to describe the survival of Slovenian cancer patients diagnosed in the last twenty years. An insight is given into the improvement made in different cancer types, population groups and prognostic factors.

Materials and methods

The principal data source was the population-based Slovenian Cancer Registry. The survival analysis included patients diagnosed with cancer in twenty years period from 1997 to 2016, which has been divided into four consecutive five-year periods. In addition, the analysis was stratified by cancer type, gender, age and stage. The survival was estimated using net survival calculated by the Pohar-Perme method and the complete approach has been applied.

Results

The survival of Slovenian cancer patients has been increasing over time. During the 20 years observed, five-year net survival increased by 11 percentage points. Significantly higher growth was observed in men. Age and stage at diagnosis are still crucial for the survival of cancer patients. Five-year net survival is lowest in those over 75 years of age at diagnosis but has also improved by seven percentage points over the past 20 years. The five-year net survival of patients in the localized stage increased by ten percentage points over the 20 years under observation. Survival of patients in the distant stage has not been improving. In both sexes, survival for melanoma, colorectal and lung cancers have increased significantly over the last 20 years. Progress has also been made in the two most common gender specific cancers: breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men. Still, the significant progress in prostate cancer is probably mostly due to lead-time bias as during the study period, Slovenia used indiscriminate PSA testing, which probably artificially prolonged survival.

Conclusions

The survival of Slovenian cancer patients has been increasing over time, which gives us a basis and an incentive for future improvements. To monitor the effectiveness of managing the cancer epidemic, the cancer burden needs to be monitored also in the future, using quality data and scientifically justified methodological approaches. In this process a well organised population-based cancer registries should play a key role.

Abstract

Background

Immunotherapy has become a cornerstone of the modern cancer treatment. It might be crucial to predict its expression non-invasively by imaging. The present study used diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) quantified by whole lesion apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values to elucidate possible associations with programmed cell death ligand 1(PD-L1) expression in head and neck squamous cell cancer (HNSCC).

Patients and methods

Overall, 29 patients with primary HNSCC of different localizations were involved in the study. DWI was obtained by using a sequence with b-values of 0 and 800 s/mm2 on a 3 T MRI. ADC values were evaluated with a whole lesion measurement and a histogram approach. PD-L1 expression was estimated on bioptic samples before any form of treatment using 3 scores, tumor positive score (TPS), immune cell score (ICS), and combined positive score (CPS).

Results

An inverse correlation between skewness derived from ADC values and ICS was identified (r = -0.38, p = 0.04). ADCmax tended to correlate with ICS (r = -0.35, p = 0.06). Other ADC parameters did not show any association with the calculated scores.

Conclusions

There is a weak association between skewness derived from ADC values and PD-L1 expression in HNSCC, which might not be strong enough to predict PD-L1 expression in clinical routine. Presumably, ADC values are more influenced by complex histopathology compartments, comprising cellular and extracellular aspects of tumors than only of a single subset of tumor associated cells.

Abstract

Background

Scientific evidence has shown that an increase in regular physical activity is associated with a decrease in the development of many types of cancer. Potential mechanisms that link physical activity to reduced cancer risk include a decrease in systemic inflammation, hyperinsulinemia, insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I), sex hormones, pro-inflammatory leptin and other obesity-related cytokines, and a significant increase in anti-inflammatory adiponectin levels. In addition, physical activity improves immune function and the composition and diversity of the gastrointestinal microbiota. Moderate physical activity is important for cancer protection, but the most significant changes in the inflammatory profile are conferred by physical activity performed at higher intensities. Thus, there is a need for further investigation into the type, intensity, and duration of physical activity for the prevention of some types of cancer and the development of effective recommendations.

Conclusions

There is a strong evidence that physical activity of moderate to vigorous intensity protects against colon and breast cancer, and probably against cancer at all other sites.

Abstract

Background

The aim of the study was to determine if the endometrial tumor volume (TV) measured by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI-TV) is associated with survival in endometrial cancer and lymph nodes metastases (LN+).

Patients and methods

We evaluated the MRI imaging and records of 341 women with endometrial cancer and preoperative MRI from 2008 to 2018. The MRI-TV was calculated using the ellipsoid formula measuring three perpendicular tumor diameters. Tumor myometrial invasion was also analyzed.

Results

Higher MRI-TV was associated with age ≥ 65y, non-endometrioid tumors, grade-3, deep-myometrial invasion, LN+ and advanced FIGO stage. There were 37 patients with LN+ (8.8%). Non-endometrioid tumors, deep-myometrial invasion, grade-3 and MRI-TV ≥ 10 cm3 were the factors associated with LN+. Using a receiver operating characteristic [ROC] curve, the MRI-TV cut-off for survival was 10 cm3 (area under curve [AUC] = 0.70; 95% CI: 0.61–0.73). 5 years disease-free (DFS) and overall survival (OS) was significantly lower in MRI-TV ≥ 10 cm3 (69.3% vs. 84.5%, and 75.4% vs. 96.1%, respectively). MRI-TV was considered an independent factor of DFS (HR: 2.20, 95% CI: 1.09–4.45, p = 0.029) and OS (HR: 3.88, 95% CI: 1.34–11.24, p = 0.012) in multivariate analysis.

Conclusions

MRI-TV was associated with LN+, and MRI-TV ≥ 10 cm3 was an independent prognostic factor of lower DFS and OS. The MRI-TV can be auxiliary information to plan the surgery strategy and predict the adjuvant treatment in women with endometrial cancer.

Abstract

Background

The aim of study was to establish the typical radiation quantity values for the most common trauma orthopaedic surgical procedures and to compare them with reference values of equivalent procedures performed in other institutions. In addition, we assess the impact of image intensifier and flat panel detector technology used for fluoroscopically guidance on patient exposure.

Materials and methods

Five most frequently performed fluoroscopically guided trauma orthopaedic procedures in University Medical Centre Ljubljana were analysed. Data on 199 cases over a 6 months period from December 2016 to June 2017 were gathered retrospectively. Study covered 40 dynamic hip screw fixations (DHS), 23 proximal femoral nail insertions (PFN), 20 proximal humeral nail insertions (PHN), 77 partial hip endoprosthesis implantations (PEP) and 39 percutaneous posterior spine fixations (PPS). The median and average along with the first and third quartile values of air kerma area product (KAP) for each procedure type were calculated as well as median and average value of fluoroscopy screening time.

Results

Typical KAP value for dynamic hip screw fixation was set at 0.52 Gycm2; for proximal femoral nail insertion at 0.53 Gycm2 and for proximal humeral nail insertion at 0.26 Gycm2. For implantation of partial endoprosthesis typical KAP value utilizing flat panel technology was set at 0.08 Gycm2 and at 0.21 Gycm2 when the image intensifier technology was used. Typical KAP value for percutaneous posterior spine fixation was set at 1.26 Gycm2, using flat panel technology and at 3.98 Gycm2 using image intensifier technology.

Conclusions

Established typical KAP levels of surgical orthopaedic procedures in traumatology will serve as a valuable tool for further radiation exposure optimization.

Abstract

Background

We are presenting the results of the Slovenian human papillomaviruses (HPV) self-sampling pilot study in colposcopy population of National Cervical Cancer Screening Programme ZORA for the first time. One-year and four-year follow-up results are presented for two different self-sampling devices.

Participants and methods

A total of 209 women were enrolled in the study at colposcopy clinic. Prior to the gynaecological examination, all women performed self-collected vaginal swab at the clinic; 111 using Qvintip and 98 using HerSwab self-sampling device. After self-sampling, two cervical smears were taken by a clinician; first for conventional cytology and second for HPV test. After that, all women underwent colposcopy and a cervical biopsy if needed. We compared sensitivity, specificity, and predictive values of cytology (at the cut-off atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance or more [ASC-US+]) and HPV test (on self- and clinician-taken samples) for the detection of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 2 or more (CIN2+) after one and four years of follow-up. Hybrid Capture 2 (HC2) assay was used for all HPV testing.

Results

The mean age of 209 women was 37.6 years and HPV positivity rate 67.0% (140/209), 36.9 years and 70.3% (78/111) in the Qvintip group and 38.4 years and 63.3% (62/98) in the HerSwab group, respectively. Overall, percent agreement between self and clinician-taken samples was 81.8% (kappa 0.534) in the Qvintip and 77.1% (kappa 0.456) in the HerSwab group. In the Qvintip group, the longitudinal sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values were 71.8%, 75.0%, 83.6%, 60.0% for cytology; 83.1%, 51.3%, 75.6% and 62.5% for HPV test of self-taken samples and 94.4%, 57.5%, 79.8% and 85.2% for HPV test on clinician-taken samples. In the HerSwab group, the corresponding results were 71.7%, 46.7%, 61.3%, 58.3% for cytology; 75.0%, 47.7%, 62.9% and 61.8% for HPV test on self-taken samples and 94.3%, 44.4%, 66.7% and 87.0% for clinician-taken samples, respectively.

Conclusions

The results confirm that HPV self-sampling is not as accurate as clinician sampling when HC2 is used. All HPV tests showed a higher sensitivity in detecting CIN2+ compared to cytology. Due to non-inferior longitudinal sensitivity of HPV self-sampling compared to cytology, HPV self-sampling might be an option for non-attenders to the National Cancer Screening Programme.

Abstract

Background

Cystoscopy in complement with urinary cytology represents the gold standard for the follow-up of patients with urinary bladder tumours. Xpert Bladder Cancer Monitor Test (XBC) is a novel mRNA-based urine test for bladder cancer surveillance. The aim of the study was to evaluate the performance of the XBC and voided urinary cytology (VUC) in the follow-up of bladder tumours.

Patients and methods

The XBC was performed on stabilized voided urine and VUC was performed on urine samples. The results were compared to cystoscopic findings and histopathological results after transurethral resection of the bladder lesion.

Results

For the prediction of malignant histopathological result sensitivity, the specificity and negative predictive value were 76.9%, 9 7.5% and 93.0% for the XBC and 38.4%, 9 7.5% and 83.3%, respectively for VUC. For the prediction of suspicious or positive cystoscopic finding sensitivity, the specificity and negative predictive value were 75.0%, 95.2%, and 93.0% respectively for the XBC and 41.7%, 97.6%, and 85.4% for VUC. The sensitivities for papilary urothelial neoplasms of low malignant potential (PUNLMP), low- and high-grade tumours were 0.0%, 66.7% an d 100.0% for the XBC and 0.0%, 66 .7% and 42.9%, respectively for VUC.

Conclusions

The XBC showed significantly higher overall sensitivity and negative predictive value than VUC and could be used to increase the recommended follow-up cystoscopy time intervals. Complementing the XBC and voided urinary cytology does not improve performance in comparison to the XBC alone.

Abstract

Background

Radiotherapy-associated angiosarcoma (RAA) of the breast is a rare complication of radiotherapy, which is often difficult to identify and has poor prognosis. It usually presents as violaceous skin, erythema or rapidly growing palpable firm mass that can be confused with other benign skin lesions.

Patients and methods

After reviewing the literature, we found only four cases with RAA after mastectomy and autologous breast reconstruction. The presented case is the first that was treated by electrochemotherapy. The patient presented with secondary angiosarcoma of the breast five years after mastectomy, immediate breast reconstruction with deep inferior epigastric artery perforator free flap and adjuvant radiotherapy.

Results

Electrochemotherapy was feasible, safe and effective in treatment of radiation induced sarcoma. Most of the treated lesions in several consecutive electrochemotherapy sessions responded with complete response, but multiple recurrences occurred in non-treated areas.

Conclusions

Patients with breast cancer after skin-sparing mastectomy and immediate breast reconstruction, who receive radiotherapy, need regular long-term follow up and low threshold for biopsy of any suspicious lesions is mandatory. Electrochemotherapy proved as one of feasible modalities of treatment for RAA.

Abstract

Background

Cure- and toxicity rates after intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) of prostate cancer are dose-and volume dependent. We prospectively studied the potential for organ at risk (OAR) sparing and compensation of tumor movement with the coverage probability (CovP) concept.

Patients and methods

Twenty-eight prostate cancer patients (median age 70) with localized disease (cT1c–2c, N0, M0) and intermediate risk features (prostate-specific antigen [PSA] < 20, Gleason score ≤ 7b) were treated in a prospective study with the CovP concept. Planning-CTs were performed on three subsequent days to capture form changes and movement of prostate and OARs. The clinical target volume (CTV) prostate and the OARs (bladder and rectum) were contoured in each CT. The union of CTV1–3 was encompassed by an isotropic margin of 7 mm to define the internal target volume (ITV). Dose prescription/escalation depended on coverage of all CTVs within the ITV. IMRT was given in 39 fractions to 78 Gy using the Monte-Carlo algorithm. Short-term androgen deprivation was recommended and given in 78.6% of patients.

Results

Long-term toxicity was evaluated in 26/28 patients after a median follow-up of 7.1 years. At last follow-up, late bladder toxicity (Radiation Therapy Oncology Group, RTOG) G1 was observed in 14.3% of patients and late rectal toxicities (RTOG) of G1 (7.1%) and of G2 (3.6%) were observed. No higher graded toxicity occurred. After 7.1 years, biochemical control (biochemically no evidence of disease, bNED) was 95.5%, prostate cancer-specific survival and the distant metastasis-free survival after 7.1 years were 100% each.

Conclusions

CovP-based IMRT was feasible in a clinical study. Dose escalation with the CovP concept was associated by a low rate of toxicity and a high efficacy regarding local and distant control.