This study was undertaken with the aim to compare the T stages in a series of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) patients using both the eighth edition of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) TNM Classification of Malignant Tumours (TNM8) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) staging systems. This would allow comparison of the two to determine suitability with regards to T stage and the effect on local recurrence and nodal disease. This was a six-year retrospective cohort study of patients with primary invasive cSCC of the head and neck who were diagnosed and treated at Western Sussex Hospitals Trust in the United Kingdom between 2007 and 2012. The TNM8 and BWH staging systems were applied to these primary cSCCs. A total of 695 invasive cSCCs treated in 604 patients over six years were identified. Most patients were male (76%), with a mean (range) age of 81 (50-103) years. The most common location for local recurrence was the scalp (n = 26, 58%). Regional metastasis occurred most commonly in the parotid gland (n = 20, 63%). All tumours were classified using both staging systems. Specifically, 432 tumours remained in the same T stage (61%), and 192 were downstaged (27%) and 71 upstaged using the BWH (10%). The median (SD) follow-up time was 23 (28) months (range 1-123). The BWH alternative staging system overlapped with the TNM8 in high-stage and low-stage tumour assignment. The highest percentage of local recurrence and regional metastasis occurred in T2b tumours.
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Published online: October 16, 2020
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