Published online Apr 21, 2016. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v22.i15.4020
Peer-review started: October 22, 2015
First decision: November 27, 2015
Revised: December 2, 2015
Accepted: January 17, 2016
Article in press: January 18, 2016
Published online: April 21, 2016
AIM: To predict the rate of lymph node (LN) metastasis in diffuse- and mixed-type early gastric cancers (EGC) for guidelines of the treatment.
METHODS: We reviewed 550 cases of EGC with diffuse- and mixed-type histology. We investigated the clinicopathological factors and histopathological components that influence the probability of LN metastasis, including sex, age, site, gross type, presence of ulceration, tumour size, depth of invasion, perineural invasion, lymphovascular invasion, and LN metastasis status. We reviewed all slides and estimated the proportions of each tumour component; pure diffuse type, mixed-predominantly diffuse type (diffuse > intestinal type), mixed-predominantly intestinal type (intestinal > diffuse type), and mixed diffuse = intestinal type. We calculated the extents of the respective components.
RESULTS: LN metastasis was observed in 12.9% (71/550) of early gastric cancers cases [15/288 mucosal EGCs (5.2%) and 56/262 submucosal EGCs (21.4%)]. Of 550 cases, 302 were diffuse-type and 248 were mixed-type EGCs. Of 248 mixed-type EGCs, 163 were mixed-predominantly diffuse type, 82 were mixed-predominantly intestinal type, and 3 were mixed diffuse = intestinal type. Mixed-type cases with predominantly diffuse type histology showed a higher frequency of LN metastasis (20.2%) than cases of pure diffuse type (9.3%) and predominantly intestinal type (12.2%) histology. We measured the dimensions of each component (intestinal and diffuse type) to determine the association of the extent of each component with LN metastasis in mixed-type gastric carcinoma. The total tumour size and the extent of poorly differentiated components was associated with LN metastasis, while that of signet ring cell components was not.
CONCLUSION: We recommend careful identification and quantitative evaluation of mixed-type early gastric cancer components after endoscopic resection to determine the intensity of the treatment.
Core tip: This study consolidates correlations between clinicopathological characteristics of early gastric cancer and the risk of lymph node (LN) metastasis, which is important to select patients that will benefit from endoscopic submucosal dissection. This paper also shows that the amount of poorly differentiated tumor cells within mixed type early gastric cancer is correlated with the highest risk of LN metastasis, thus highlighting the need for diligent histological characterization of patient specimens.