MATERIALS AND METHODS: This retrospective study was conducted at the Department of Radiotherapy and Oncology, Hospital Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. All patients with histologically confirmed recurrent NPC in the absence of distant metastasis treated in the period 1997-2010 were included in this study. These patients were treated with ICBT alone or in combination with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT). Treatment outcomes measured were local recurrence free survival (LRFS), disease free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS).
RESULTS: Thirty three patients were eligible for this study. The median age at recurrence was 56 years with a median time to initial local recurrence of 27 months. Majority of patients were staged as rT1-2 (94%) or rN0 (82%). The proportion of patients categorised as stage III-IV at first local recurrence was only 9%. Twenty one patients received a combination of ICBT and external beam radiotherapy while 12 patients were treated with ICBT alone. Median interval of recurrence post re-irradiation was 32 months (range: 4-110 months). The median LRFS, DFS and OS were 30 months, 29 months and 36 months respectively. The 5 year LRFS, DFS and OS were 44.7%, 38.8% and 28.1% respectively. The N stage at recurrence was found to be a significant prognostic factor for LRFS and DFS after multivariate analysis. Major late complications occurred in 34.9% of our patients.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study shows ICBT was associated with a reasonable long term outcome in salvaging recurrent NPC although major complications remained a significant problem. The N stage at recurrence was a significant prognostic factor for both LRFS and DFS.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We reviewed the clinical notes of all patients prescribed with oral capecitabine chemotherapy for any tumour sites in University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) from 1st January 2009 till 31st June 2010. Information collected included patient demographics, histopathological features, treatment received including the different chemotherapy regimens and intent of treatment whether the chemotherapy was given for neoadjuvant, concurrent with radiation, adjuvant or palliative intent. The aim of this study is to establish the pattern of usage, FN and TRD rates with capecitabine in clinical practice outside of clinical trial setting. FN is defined as an oral temperature >38.5°or two consecutive readings of >38.0° for 2 hours and an absolute neutrophil count <0.5 x 109/L, or expected to fall below 0.5 x 109/L (de Naurois et al., 2010). Treatment related death was defined as death occurring during or within 30 days of last chemotherapy treatment.
RESULTS: Between 1st January 2009 and 30th June 2010, 274 patients were treated with capecitabine chemotherapy in UMMC. The mean age was 58 years (range 22 to 82 years). Capecitabine was used in 14 different tumour sites with the colorectal site predominating with a total of 128 cases (46.7%), followed by breast cancer (35.8%). Capecitabine was most commonly used in the palliative setting accounting for 63.9% of the cases, followed by the adjuvant setting (19.7%). The most common regimen was single agent capecitabine with 129 cases (47.1%). The other common regimens were XELOX (21.5%) and ECX (10.2%). The main result of this study showed an overall FN rate of 2.2% (6/274). The overall TRD rate was 5.1% (14/274). The FN rate for the single agent capecitabine regimen was 1.6% (2/129) and the TRD rate was 5.4% (7/129). All the TRDs were with single agent capecitabine regimen were used for palliative intent.
CONCLUSIONS: Oral capecitabine is used widely in clinical practice in a myriad of tumour sites and bears a low risk of febrile neutropaenia. However, capecitabine like any other intravenous chemotherapeutic agent carries a significant risk of treatment related death.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: All newly diagnosed patients with squamous cell carcinoma of head and neck (HNSCC) referred for treatment to the Oncology Unit at UMMC from 2003-2010 were retrospectively analyzed. Treatment outcomes were 5-year overall survival (OS), cause specific survival (CSS), loco-regional control (LRC) and radiotherapy (RT) related side effects. Kaplan-Meier and log rank analyses were used to determine survival outcomes, stratified according to American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) stage.
RESULTS: A total of 130 cases were analysed. Most cases (81.5%) were at late stage (AJCC III-IVB) at presentation. The 5-year OS for the whole study population was 34.4% with a median follow up of 24 months. The 5-year OS according to AJCC stage was 100%, 48.2%, 41.4% and 22.0% for stage I, II, III and IVA-B, respectively. The 5-year overall CSS and LCR were 45.4% and 55.4%, respectively. Late effects of RT were documented in 41.4% of patients. The most common late effect was xerostomia.
CONCLUSIONS: The treatment outcome of HNSCC at our centre is lagging behind those of developed nations. Efforts to increase the number of patients presenting in earlier stages, increase in the use of combined modality treatment, especially concurrent chemoradiotherapy and implementation of intensity modulated radiotherapy, may lead to better outcomes for our HNC patients.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Between March 2011 and May 2012, 20 patients were treated with 55 fractions of brachytherapy using tandem and ovoids and underwent post-implant CT scans. The external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) dose was 48.6 Gy in 27 fractions. HDR brachytherapy was delivered to a dose of 21 Gy in three fractions. The ICRU bladder and rectum point doses along with 4 additional rectal points were recorded. The maximum dose (DMax) to rectum was the highest recorded dose at one of these five points. Using the HDR plus 2.6 brachytherapy treatment planning system, the bladder and rectum were retrospectively contoured on the 55 CT datasets. The DVHs for rectum and bladder were calculated and the minimum doses to the highest irradiated 2cc area of rectum and bladder were recorded (D2cc) for all individual fractions. The mean D2cc of rectum was compared to the means of ICRU rectal point and rectal DMax using the Student's t-test. The mean D2cc of bladder was compared with the mean ICRU bladder point using the same statistical test .The total dose, combining EBRT and HDR brachytherapy, were biologically normalized to the conventional 2 Gy/fraction using the linear-quadratic model. (α/β value of 10 Gy for target, 3 Gy for organs at risk).
RESULTS: The total prescribed dose was 77.5 Gy α/β10. The mean dose to the rectum was 4.58 ± 1.22 Gy for D 2cc, 3.76 ± 0.65 Gy at D ICRU and 4.75 ± 1.01 Gy at DMax. The mean rectal D 2cc dose differed significantly from the mean dose calculated at the ICRU reference point (p<0.005); the mean difference was 0.82 Gy (0.48 -1.19 Gy). The mean EQD2 was 68.52 ± 7.24 Gy α/β3 for D 2cc, 61.71 ± 2.77 Gy α/β3 at D ICRU and 69.24 ± 6.02 Gy α/β3 at DMax. The mean ratio of D 2cc rectum to D ICRU rectum was 1.25 and the mean ratio of D 2cc rectum to DMax rectum was 0.98 for all individual fractions. The mean dose to the bladder was 6.00 ± 1.90 Gy for D 2cc and 5.10 ± 2.03 Gy at D ICRU. However, the mean D 2cc dose did not differ significantly from the mean dose calculated at the ICRU reference point (p=0.307); the mean difference was 0.90 Gy (0.49-1.25 Gy). The mean EQD2 was 81.85 ± 13.03 Gy α/β3 for D 2cc and 74.11 ± 19.39 Gy α/β3 at D ICRU. The mean ratio of D 2cc bladder to D ICRU bladder was 1.24. In the majority of applications, the maximum dose point was not the ICRU point. On average, the rectum received 77% and bladder received 92% of the prescribed dose.
CONCLUSIONS: OARs doses assessed by DVH criteria were higher than ICRU point doses. Our data suggest that the estimated dose to the ICRU bladder point may be a reasonable surrogate for the D 2cc and rectal DMax for D 2cc. However, the dose to the ICRU rectal point does not appear to be a reasonable surrogate for the D 2cc.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The case records of 125 patients with NSCLC and brain metastases consecutively treated with radiotherapy at two tertiary centres from January 2006 to June 2012 were analysed for patient, tumour and treatment-related prognostic factors. Patients receiving SRS/SRT were treated using Cyberknife. Variables were examined in univariate and multivariate testing.
RESULTS: Overall median survival was 3.4 months (95%CI: 1.7-5.1). Median survival for patients with multiple metastases receiving WBRT was 1.5 months, 1-3 metastases receiving WBRT was 3.6 months and 1-3 metastases receiving surgery or SRS/SRT was 8.9 months. ECOG score (≤2 vs >2, p=0.001), presence of seizure (yes versus no, p=0.031), treatment modality according to number of brain metastases (1-3 metastases+surgery or SRS/SRT±WBRT vs 1-3 metastases+WBRT only vs multiple metastases+WBRT only, p=0.007) and the use of post-therapy systemic treatment (yes versus no, p=0.001) emerged as significant on univariate analysis. All four factors remained statistically significant on multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: ECOG ≤2, presence of seizures, oligometastatic disease treated with aggressive local therapy (surgery or SRS/SRT) and the use of post-therapy systemic treatment are favourable prognostic factors in NSCLC patients with brain metastases.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness and tolerability of scalp cooling among breast cancer patients in our study population.
METHODS: Consecutive breast cancer patients receiving FE75C, FE100C, FE100C-D, docetaxel75 or docetaxel, and cyclophosphamide (TC) at our treatment center were recruited and allocated to the treatment (scalp cooling, DigniCapTM system) or control group in this prospective nonrandomized controlled study. The assessment of alopecia was carried out using the World Health Organization grading system and clinical photographs.
RESULTS: Seventy patients were recruited, but only 25 completed the study and were evaluable for analysis. Five of 12 patients (42%) in the scalp cooling group managed to preserve hair. Two of three patients who received FE75C and TC regimens had minimal hair loss. All patients treated with FE100C had severe hair loss. Half of all patients who received scalp cooling throughout chemotherapy rated the treatment as reasonably well tolerated. The most common reason for discontinuing scalp cooling was intolerance to its side effects.
CONCLUSION: Scalp cooling is potentially effective in reducing CIA caused by docetaxel, TC, and FE75C chemotherapy regimen. However, it was not well tolerated by our study population. The dropout rate was high, and this needs to be taken into consideration when pursuing further trials in a similar setting.