High pretreatment neutrophil-lymphocyte ratio predicts recurrence and poor prognosis for combined small cell lung cancer

N Shao, Q Cai
Clinical & Translational Oncology 2015, 17 (10): 772-8

BACKGROUNDS: Compared to pure small cell lung cancer (SCLC), combined small cell lung cancer (C-SCLC) has its own characteristics. High neutrophil to lymphocyte ratio (NLR) and platelet-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) have been shown to be related to poor prognosis in several types of tumors. The aim of this study was to explore the prognosis value of NLR and PLR in patients with C-SCLC.

METHODS: A total of 112 patients diagnosed with C-SCLC between January 2000 and March 2009 were enrolled in the study. The clinicopathological parameters, laboratory analyses, and survival time were collected and analyzed. The correlation between NLR, PLR, and clinicopathological characters was analyzed. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to investigate the prognostic significance of these parameters for C-SCLC.

RESULTS: The pretreatment NLR was elevated in 37.5 % patients (NLR ≥ 4.15; n = 42; H-NLR). NLR was significantly related to disease stage (p = 0.033) and tumor recurrence (p = 0.014). The median overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were significantly worse in the H-NLR group (OS: 22.0 months vs 11.7 months, p = 0.001; PFS: 11.1 vs 6.0 months, p < 0.001). However, PLR at diagnosis was not associated with OS or PFS. Multivariate analyses indicated elevated NLR (HR = 1.6; p = 0.001), disease stage (HR = 1.6; p = 0.001), and performance status (HR = 1.8; p = 0.015) as independent prognostic factors.

CONCLUSIONS: High pretreatment NLR (≥4.15) is a potential useful indicator for C-SCLC recurrence and predicts a poor long-term prognosis for C-SCLC, which should be considered in defining the prognosis with other well-known prognosticators in C-SCLC patients.

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