Annals of Surgical Oncology

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 527–532 | Cite as

Salvage Surgery for Residual Primary and Locally Recurrent Anal Squamous Cell Carcinoma After Chemoradiotherapy in HIV-positive Individuals

  • Laila Cunin
  • M. Alfa-Wali
  • J. Turner
  • M. Bower
  • L. Ion
  • T. Allen-Mersh
Colorectal Cancer



The treatment of anal cancer in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) patients—as in the general population—is primarily with chemoradiotherapy (CRT), and abdominoperineal resection of residual or recurrent primary disease. The aim of this study was to evaluate the extent of residual primary disease and local recurrence as well as the outcome of salvage surgery after CRT for anal carcinoma in HIV-positive individuals.


We retrospectively studied HIV-positive anal carcinoma patients treated between February 1989 and November 2012 in a specialist London unit. Extent of residual primary disease, local recurrence after CRT, postoperative complications, and survival after salvage surgery were evaluated.


Complete response was experienced in 44 of 53 (83 %) of HIV patients treated with CRT for anal carcinoma. One patient (2.3 %) developed local recurrence. Nine patients (eight residual primary disease after CRT and one local recurrence) underwent salvage surgery after CRT. There were no perioperative deaths, and perioperative CD4 counts were sustained. Complications occurred in five patients (55 %). Median interval to complete perineal healing was 4 months (range 2–11 months), and median hospital stay was 29 days. Survival (median 16 months) was 25 % at 2 years from salvage surgery.


Results in HIV-positive patients receiving highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) suggest that loss of HIV sensitivity to HAART can be avoided, but that there is increased postoperative morbidity that may be related to HIV disease. Survival was comparable to that for salvage therapy after optimal CRT in non-HIV anal carcinoma patients.


Human Immunodeficiency Virus Anal Cancer Human Immunodeficiency Virus Disease Anal Carcinoma Anal Squamous Cell Carcinoma 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Society of Surgical Oncology 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laila Cunin
    • 1
  • M. Alfa-Wali
    • 1
  • J. Turner
    • 1
  • M. Bower
    • 2
    • 3
  • L. Ion
    • 4
  • T. Allen-Mersh
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryChelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation TrustLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of OncologyChelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation TrustLondonUK
  3. 3.Imperial CollegeLondonUK
  4. 4.Department of Plastic SurgeryChelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation TrustLondonUK

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