The 2-year survival of patients with small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) with limited disease is about 25% and the survival curve continues to decline after 2 years. We reviewed 34 cases of survivors of SCLC who had been free of disease for 2 years and who constituted 12.2% of the 278 patients with SCLC newly diagnosed at our institution from 1977 to 1991. The cancer had recurred in 13 patients, 10 of whom were treated with chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy, and 1 complete and 1 partial response were obtained. Three patients received only supportive care because of poor performance status. The median survival after recurrence in the 13 patients was 7.4 months (range 0-39 months). A second primary cancer was noted in 5 patients, but 3 of them died from recurrence of SCLC. The prognosis ofpatients with late recurrence of SCLC was relatively good, and it seems that adequate treatment in such cases may lead to long-term survival.

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