Association between age and disease specific mortality in medullary thyroid cancer

Zeyad T. Sahli, Joseph K. Canner, Martha A. Zeiger, Aarti Mathur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between age and disease specific mortality (DSM) among adults diagnosed with medullary thyroid cancer (MTC). Method: Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER-18) was used to analyze adult MTC patients stratified by age (18–64, 65–79, ≥80 years). Associations between patient demographics, tumor size, nodal status, metastatic disease, and extent of surgery on DSM was assessed with multivariable Cox regression. Results: Among 1457 patients with MTC, 1008 (69.2%) were younger adults, 371 (25.5%) older adults, and 78 (5.4%) were super-elderly. A significantly higher proportion of older adults and super-elderly had less than the recommended operation for MTC. On multivariable analysis, older adults and super-elderly were 2.9 and 6.7 times more likely to have an increased DSM (HR:2.91, 95% CI: 1.83–4.63; p < 0.001 and HR: 6.70, 95%CI: 3.69–12.20; p < 0.001). Extent of surgery or lymphadenectomy did not affect DSM. Conclusions: Increased age is an independent predictor of DSM in patients with MTC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)478-484
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Aging
  • Disease-specific mortality
  • Elderly
  • Medullary thyroid cancer
  • Older adults
  • Survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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