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Effect and toxicity of endoluminal high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy in centrally located tumors of the upper respiratory tract

, : Effect and toxicity of endoluminal high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy in centrally located tumors of the upper respiratory tract. Strahlentherapie und Onkologie 176(2): 60-66

Aim: To assess effect and toxicity of high-dose-rate afterloading (HDR) alone or in combination with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) in centrally located tumors of the upper respiratory tract. Patients and Methods: From 1987 to 1996, 55 patients were treated. Twenty-one patients (group A1: 17 non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), A2: 4 metastases from other malignancies) were treated using HDR alone due to a relapse after external beam irradiation. In 34 previously untreated and inoperable patients (group B1: 27 NSCLC, B2: 7 metastases from other malignancies) HDR was given as a boost after EBRT (30 to 60 Gy, median 50). HDR was carried out with a 192Ir source (370 GBq). The brachytherapy dose (group A: 5 to 27 Gy, median 20; B: 10 to 20 Gy, median 15) was prescribed to 1 cm distance from the source axis. A distanciable applicator was used in 39/55 patients. Results: In group A1, a response rate (CR, PR) of 53% (group B1: 77%) was reached. The median survival (Kaplan-Meier) was 5 months in group A1 (B1: 20 months). The 1-,3- and 5-year local progression free survival rates (Kaplan-Meier) were 66% (15%), 52% (0%), and 37% (0%) in group B1 (group A1). Prognostic favorable factors in group B1 were a tumor diameter < 20 mm, the lack of radiological mediastinal involvement, a complete remission, and a Karnofsky performance status > 70. Grade-1 or 2 toxicity (RTOG/EORTC) occurred in 0% in group A and in 6% in group B. We observed no Grade-3 or 4 toxicity. Complications caused by persistent or progressive local disease occurred in 3 patients in group A (fatal hemorrhage, tracheomediastinal fistula, hemoptysis) and in 2 patients in group B (fatal hemorrhage, hemoptysis). Conclusions: HDR brachytherapy is an effective treatment with moderate side effects. In combination with external beam irradiation long-term remissions can be reached in one third of the patients.


PMID: 10697652

DOI: 10.1007/pl00002329

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