Cancer Res Treat.  2015 Jul;47(3):436-440. 10.4143/crt.2013.184.

Potential Role of Adjuvant Radiation Therapy in Cervical Thymic Neoplasm Involving Thyroid Gland or Neck

  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Pathology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


The purpose
of this study is to assess the clinicopathologic features, treatment outcomes, and role of adjuvant radiation therapy (RT) in cervical thymic neoplasm involving the thyroid gland or neck.
The medical and pathologic records of eight patients with cervical thymic neoplasm were reviewed retrospectively. All patients underwent surgical resection, including thyroidectomy or mass excision. Adjuvant RT was added in five patients with adverse clinicopathologic features. The radiation doses ranged from 54 Gy/27 fractions to 66 Gy/30 fractions delivered to the primary tumor bed and pathologically involved regional lymphatics using a 3-dimensional conformal technique.
Eight cases of cervical thymic neoplasm included three patients with carcinoma showing thymus-like differentiation (CASTLE) and five with ectopic cervical thymoma. The histologic subtypes of ectopic cervical thymoma patients were World Health Organization (WHO) type B3 thymoma in one, WHO type B1 thymoma in two, WHO type AB thymoma in one, and metaplastic thymoma in one, respectively. The median age was 57 years (range, 40 to 76 years). Five patients received adjuvant RT: three with CASTLE; one with WHO type B3; and one with WHO type AB with local invasiveness. After a median follow-up period of 49 months (range, 11 to 203 months), no recurrence had been observed, regardless of adjuvant RT.
Adjuvant RT after surgical resection might be worthwhile in patients with CASTLE and ectopic cervical thymoma with WHO type B2-C and/or extraparenchymal extension, as similarly indicated for primary thymic epithelial tumors. A longer follow-up period may be needed in order to validate this strategy.


Thyroid neoplasms; Carcinoma; Thymus-like differentiation; Neck; Radiotherapy
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