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Unilateral radiation therapy for advanced stage tonsil cancer results in favorable outcomes
Date:2/20/2014

Scottsdale, Ariz., February 20, 2014Limiting radiation therapy to lymph nodes on one side of the neck for advanced tonsil cancer resulted in good local regional control and no cancer recurrence on the untreated side, according to research presented today at the 2014 Multidisciplinary Head and Neck Cancer Symposium. Additionally, the study results indicate that primary tumor location, rather than the amount of lymph node involvement on the tumor side of the neck, dictates the risk for disease in the opposite side of the neck.

The study focused on 46 out of 153 total patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the tonsil who received treatment between 1997 and 2012 at Washington University in St. Louis. Tumor location was well-documented in the 46 patients who received unilateral radiation therapy (RT), with 40 patients (87 percent) having lateralized (located on one side of the throat) primary tumors; two patients (4 percent) had non-lateralized tumors, and in four patients (9 percent), lateralization could not be determined retrospectively. The patients underwent surgical resection and postoperative intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), with 30 patients also receiving concurrent chemotherapy.

Of the subset of 46 patients treated unilaterally, 72 percent were men, and the average patient age was 59. Sixty-one percent of patients were current or former smokers. The cancer stage/classification for the study group was: TX = 2 percent (1); T1 = 44 percent (20); T2 = 41 percent (19); and T3 = 13 percent (6). The patients' stages of lymph node involvement were: N0 = 11 percent (5); N1 = 13 percent (6); and N2 = 76 percent (35). The prescribed radiation doses were 60-66 Gy to the postoperative bed and involved neck; and 52-54 Gy to the elective neck in 30-33 fractions using a simultaneous integrated boost technique.

The median follow-up period was 2.8 years (range was .4 to 8.7 years). There were no local or regional recurrences reported
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Contact: Michelle Kirkwood
michellek@astro.org
703-286-1600
American Society for Radiation Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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