Gastric Cancer

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 214–218 | Cite as

Recurrence in early gastric cancer with lymph node metastasis

  • Makoto Saka
  • Hitoshi Katai
  • Takeo Fukagawa
  • Rajwinder Nijjar
  • Takeshi Sano
Original Article



Early gastric cancer (EGC) has an excellent prognosis, but some patients with lymph node-positive disease will develop recurrence. In this study we investigated the risk factors for recurrence in this selected group of patients.


The clinical and pathological records of 2368 patients who underwent gastrectomy for solitary EGC between 1980 and 1999 at the National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, were examined. Two hundred and thirty-eight patients (10%) were lymph node-positive (positive for lymph node metastasis) and form the population of this study.


Nineteen (8%) of the 238 patients with lymph nodepositive disease developed recurrence. The most common site of recurrence was lymph node (37%), followed by liver (21%). The interval between surgery and the detection of recurrence ranged from 3 to 98 months, with a median of 26 months. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that the number of metastatic nodes was an independent risk factor for recurrence. Patients with seven or more metastatic nodes had the highest rate of recurrence, at 38%.


The number of nodes positive for metastasis was the only independent risk factor for recurrence after curative surgery in patients with lymph node-positive early gastric cancer. These high-risk patients may obtain additional survival benefit if targeted with adjuvant chemotherapy.

Key words

Early gastric cancer Lymph node metastasis Recurrence Adjuvant chemotherapy 


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Copyright information

© The International Gastric Cancer Association and The Japanese Gastric Cancer Association 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Makoto Saka
    • 1
  • Hitoshi Katai
    • 1
  • Takeo Fukagawa
    • 1
  • Rajwinder Nijjar
    • 2
  • Takeshi Sano
    • 1
  1. 1.Gastric Surgery DivisionNational Cancer Center HospitalTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Heart of England NHS Foundation TrustBirminghamUK

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