Purpose: There is relatively little literature on adjuvant chemotherapy after radical nephroureterectomy in patients with upper tract urothelial carcinoma. We determined the incidence of adjuvant chemotherapy in high risk patients and the ensuing effect on overall and cancer specific survival. Materials and Methods: Using an international collaborative database we identified 1,390 patients who underwent nephroureterectomy for nonmetastatic upper tract urothelial carcinoma between 1992 and 2006. Of these cases 542 (39%) were classified as high risk (pT3N0, pT4N0 and/or lymph node positive). These patients were divided into 2 groups, including those who did and did not receive adjuvant chemotherapy, and stratified by gender, age group, performance status, and tumor grade and stage. Cox proportional hazard modeling and Kaplan-Meier analysis were used to determine overall and cancer specific survival in the cohorts. Results: Of high risk patients 121 (22%) received adjuvant chemotherapy. Adjuvant chemotherapy was more commonly administered in the context of increased tumor grade and stage (p <0.001). Median survival in the entire cohort was 24 months (range 0 to 231). There was no significant difference in overall or cancer specific survival between patients who did and did not receive adjuvant chemotherapy. However, age, performance status, and tumor grade and stage were significant predictors of overall and cancer specific survival. Conclusions: Adjuvant chemotherapy is infrequently used to treat high risk upper tract urothelial carcinoma after nephroureterectomy. Despite this finding it appears that adjuvant chemotherapy confers minimal impact on overall or cancer specific survival in this group.
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