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2 landmark studies report on success of using image-guided brachytherapy to treat cervical cancer
Date:4/20/2013

cal control with higher doses."

Cervical cancer patients were treated with external beam radiotherapy, chemotherapy and image-guided adaptive brachytherapy (IGABT) based on MRI or CT scans. The amount of residual tumour (known as "high risk clinical tumour volume" or HR CTV) was assessed after the external beam radiotherapy in order to plan IGABT, and to target the residual tumour. "By taking the residual tumour into account we are able to tailor the brachytherapy dose to the individual patient and to the individual tumour response. We call this 'adaptive radiotherapy' because we adapt our treatment to changes which occur during radiochemotherapy," explains Prof Tanderup.

"Our study shows very clearly that the higher the dose the better the tumour's response to the brachytherapy for the entire patient population. It is possible to obtain local control in over 90 percent of patients with application of very high doses of over 90Gy. Brachytherapy is a very appropriate technique to obtain highly focused boost doses, and retroEMBRACE shows that it is actually possible to deliver doses greater than 90Gy for a significant fraction of the patients. It would not be possible to achieve doses greater than 90Gy with external beam radiotherapy without significantly increasing dose to critical organs, and therefore brachytherapy is a crucial component of radiotherapy in cervix cancer. Furthermore, the study also enables us to analyse results in patients with different risks of their tumours recurring or continuing to grow."

She will conclude: "The retroEMBRACE study is important for the community because it establishes evidence for a dose response relationship in locally advanced cervical cancer; it shows that local control in over 90 percent of patients can be obtained with the use of MRI-guided brachytherapy; retroEMBRACE makes it possible for institutions to change their dose prescription in order to optimise the balance between local control and ad
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Contact: Emma Mason
wordmason@mac.com
European Society for Radiotherapy and Oncology (ESTRO)
Source:Eurekalert

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