Osteosarcorna of the head and neck: Meta-analysis of nonrandomized studies

Author(s): Kassir RR, Rassekh CH, Kinsella JB, Segas J, Carrau RL,


To assess the role of adjuvant therapy in the treatment of osteogenic sarcoma of the head and neck, treatment and survival information from 173 patients with osteosarcoma of the head and neck was entered into a database. A meta-analysis of the data was attempted with primary emphasis on the effect of adjuvant therapy on disease outcome. The overall 5-year survival was 37%. Patients with mandibular and maxillary tumors had similar survival rates; both groups fared significantly better than patients with extragnathic tumors (P<0.001). Treatment with surgery alone was associated with significantly longer survival rates (P<0.03) than surgery with adjuvant therapy. In the majority of patients reported, information about surgical margins was not available. For this reason, the differences may not adequately represent the effect of adjuvant therapy. While there have been encouraging results with adjuvant treatment protocols for long bone osteosarcoma, the ultimate role of radiation and chemotherapy in the management of osteosarcoma of the head and neck remains unproven. Nevertheless, we recommend that adjuvant therapy be considered due to the poor prognosis in osteosarcoma of the head and neck.

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