CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Int Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2021; 25(01): e108-e114
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1708898
Original Research

Time between Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypopharynx and Larynx Cancer: Are Longer Delays Associated with Higher Discrepancy between Clinical and Pathological Staging?

1  Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário do Porto, Porto, Portugal
2  Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Portuguese Institute of Oncology, Porto, Portugal
› Author Affiliations


Introduction At the time of diagnosis, treatment strategies for cancer are largely based upon clinical staging. However, discrepancy between clinical and pathological staging has been reported.

Objective To assess the rate of staging discrepancy in Laryngeal and Hypopharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma (LHSCC), the potential influence of higher interval of time from diagnosis to primary surgical treatment, and whether this has any impact on survival outcomes.

Methods Retrospective study of patients with LHSCC proposed for primary surgical treatment.

Results The study population included 125 Caucasian patients with LHSCC. The level of agreement between clinical and pathological tumor staging was moderate (Cohen’s Kappa: 0.400; p < 0.001) and similar result was found for node staging (Cohen’ Kappa: 0.520; p < 0.001). The mean time between diagnosis and surgical treatment was 26.66 days and no statistically significant influence was found with staging discrepancy. The sample presented a 5-year Overall Survival (OS) of 58.2% and a Disease-specific survival (DSS) of 72.6%. No statistically significant impact of staging discrepancy on survival was found.

Conclusion For advanced LHSCC, based on the findings of physical examination, endoscopy and imaging, is possible to achieve a moderate accuracy between clinical and pathological staging which allows a reliable counselling and treatment planning. Interval of time under 3–4 weeks between diagnosis and surgical treatment does not influence the rate of discrepancy. However, almost 30% of staging discrepancy is expected due to false negatives of imaging and limitations of physical exams.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Ethical approval: All of the procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent: Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the present study.

Financial Disclosure

The authors declare that they have no financial disclosure to declare.

Publication History

Received: 25 March 2019

Accepted: 19 January 2020

Publication Date:
04 May 2020 (online)

© 2020. Fundação Otorrinolaringologia. This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, permitting unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction so long as the original work is properly cited. (

Thieme Revinter Publicações Ltda.
Rua do Matoso 170, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, CEP 20270-135, Brazil