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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 42

of 'Adjuvant chemotherapy for resected stage II colon cancer'

C-stage in colon cancer: implications of carcinoembryonic antigen biomarker in staging, prognosis, and management.
Thirunavukarasu P, Sukumar S, Sathaiah M, Mahan M, Pragatheeshwar KD, Pingpank JF, Zeh H 3rd, Bartels CJ, Lee KK, Bartlett DL
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2011;103(8):689. Epub 2011 Mar 18.
BACKGROUND: The American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) has proposed the inclusion of pretreatment serum carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) level (C-stage) into the conventional TNM staging system of colon cancer. We assessed the prognosis of various stages of colon cancer after such an inclusion.
METHODS: Data for all patients (N = 17 910) diagnosed with colonic adenocarcinoma (AJCC stages I, IIA, IIB, IIC, IIIA, IIIB, IIIC, and IV, based on TNM staging system) between January 1, 2004, and December 31, 2004, with a median follow-up of 27 months (range 0-35 months), were collected from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database. C-stage (C0-stage = normal CEA level; C1-stage = elevated CEA level) was assigned to all patients with available CEA information (n = 9083). Multivariable analyses using Cox proportional hazards models were used to identify independent factors associated with prognosis. Prognosis of overall stages (AJCC stages I-IV and C0 or C1) was analyzed using Kaplan-Meier survival curves. All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: C1-stage was independently associated with a 60% increased risk of overall mortality (hazard ratio of death = 1.60, 95% confidence interval = 1.46 to 1.76, P<.001). Overall survival was decreased in patients with C1-stage cancer compared with C0-stage cancer of the respective overall stages (P<.05). Similarly, decreased overall survival was noted in patients with stage I C1 cancer compared with stage IIA C0 or stage IIIA C0 cancer (P<.001), in patients with stage IIA C1 cancer compared with stage IIIA C0 (P<.001), and in patients with stage IIB C1 or stage IIC C1 cancer compared with stage IIIB C0 cancer (P<.001).
CONCLUSIONS: C-stage was an independent prognostic factor for colon cancer. The results support routine preoperative CEA testing and C-staging upon diagnosis of colon cancer and the inclusion of C-stage in the conventional TNM staging of colon cancer.
Department of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15232, USA.