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Revista Cubana de Medicina

versão impressa ISSN 0034-7523


SENRA ARMAS, Luis Alfonso  e  MENENDEZ PEREZ, Rayner. Identification of the primary tumor in patients with metastases presenting as cancer. Rev cubana med [online]. 2014, vol.53, n.4, pp.402-416. ISSN 0034-7523.

Introduction: today cancer competes with ischemic heart disease as the leading cause of death in Cuba, even far above cerebrovascular disease, accidents, and pneumonia. In many cases, cancer has metastasized and only the primary tumor is only identified in a part of them, while in the rest, the tumor remains "hidden" behind a research considered as "optimal". Objective: to determine, in our context, how often a primary tumor is identified when the cancer has metastasized, the topographical distribution of metastasis sites and histological variants in cases of "hidden" primary. Methods: A cross-sectional, prospective and descriptive study was conducted in the Department of Internal Medicine, at Hermanos Ameijeiras Clinical Hospital from January 2010 to January 2013. The working universe consisted of 100 patients with metastasis with no primary tumor identified as diagnosis of hospitalization, who met the inclusion criteria. Location of primary tumor, metastatic sites and histological types were variables used. Descriptive statistics were mainly used, especially those applicable to qualitative variables (incidence). Results: primary tumor was identified in 50 patients. The most common sites were lung (11 %), colon, ovarian and prostate (5 % each). no primary tumor was identified in 50 % of cases. The most common site of metastasis was liver (56.0 %), followed by lymph (41.0 %) lung and pleura (19.0). the most common strain was well-differentiated adenocarcinoma (42 %) in those patients whose primary tumor failed to be identified; followed by the poorly differentiated carcinoma (34 %) and neuroendocrine carcinoma (20 %). Conclusions: In our context, identifying the primary tumor is achieved in half of the patients with metastases. This is independent of the number of metastases at presentation. Liver is the most common site of metastasis. The predominant histological variant among patients with "hidden" primary was adenocarcinoma.

Palavras-chave : primary tumor; metastasis; hidden primary cancer (HPC).

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