There were tumor strictures commonly encountered in the esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) to limit the conventional echoendoscope for exact tumor staging and size measurements. This study evaluated the role of miniprobe endosonography (EUS) to predict the survival of ESCC patients after concurrent chemoradiation therapy (CCRT). This study prospectively enrolled ESCC patients to receive high-frequency miniprobe EUS for the assessments of the tumor size and tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage. For the patients defined with advanced stages to receive CCRT as initial therapy, the tumor size parameters assessed by EUS were analyzed for their correlation with the treatment response and the patients' survivals. Fifty-four patients, >96% with advanced TNM stage III or IV, were enrolled with a medium follow-up of 320.5 days. Almost all of the 54 cases had partial or complete stricture of the esophageal lumens due to the tumor obstructions at enrollment. The overall median survival was 18.6 months, and the 1- and the 2-year survival rates were 64.9 and 45.2%, respectively. Patients with initial tumor length <6cm assessed by the pre-CCRT EUS had a better survival than those with length ≥6cm (median survival: >56.5 months vs. 11.5 months, P= 0.006). The patients with initial tumor length <6cm had a higher rate of downstage than those with tumor length ≥6cm after the first course of CCRT (80.0% vs. 16.7%, P= 0.035). Multivariate Cox regression confirmed the initial tumor length (hazard ratio [HR]= 1.21, P= 0.034) as well as the presence of distal metastasis are both independent predictors of the survival in ESCC patients receiving CCRT. For the ESCC patients, commonly with tumor stricture, the miniprobe EUS to assess tumor length before CCRT can predict the treatment response and the survivals.
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