Background: Clinical course following failure of human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive oropharyngeal cancers (HPV + OPC) is poorly understood. This study aims to characterize disease course following failure after transoral robotic surgery (TORS). Methods: We identified patients with HPV + OPC-treated upfront with TORS at our institution from 2007 to 2017. HPV status was confirmed with immunohistochemistry or HPV DNA polymerase chain reaction. Patient characteristics, treatment modalities, and post-recurrence outcomes were analyzed for the recurrent cohort. Results: Of the 317 HPV + OPC patients, 28 (8.8%) experienced recurrence, all of HPV 16/18 subtypes. Median post-recurrence survival was 19.8 months (range 2.3-195.8 months) in the 12 locoregional and 16 months (range 2.4-79.5 months) in the 14 distant failures. Sixteen are alive with a median of 39.8 months (range 5.5-209.4 months) after retreatment. Conclusion: This is one of the largest series evaluating survival following TORS failure in HPV + OPC. Despite failure, long-term survival and durable remission are possible with single-modal or multiple-modal salvage treatment.
- head and neck