Objective: s In this study, we investigated prognostic factors associated with survival after distantly metastatic recurrence in surgically resected non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and clarified the influence of local treatment on the prognosis for oligometastatic recurrence. Methods From 1994 through 2004, 418 consecutive patients with NSCLC underwent complete resection; 138 experienced a postoperative recurrence by December 2005. Of those, we reviewed 93 patients with only distant metastases for clinicopathological information, treatment modality, and survival. Results For the 93 patients with distant metastasis alone, the 2- and 5-year survival rates after recurrence were 43.9% and 38.7%, respectively. Of those patients, 44 first received local treatment, including radiotherapy in 31 and a surgical resection in 13. Their recurrent disease (oligometastases) was limited with the potential to be controlled with local treatment. The targeted metastatic organs were brain in 14 patients, bone in 14, lungs in 12, and other organs in 4. Significant prognostic factors for postrecurrence survival included adenocarcinoma histology, long disease-free interval (DFI) (1 year or longer), and the performance of local treatment for oligometastases. Conclusion Local therapy such as radiotherapy and surgery, might be considered first-line treatment in patients with postoperative oligometastatic recurrence, especially those with a DFI ≥ 1 year.
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