METHODS: The study comprised a systematic review with meta-analysis and trial sequential analysis (TSA) of randomized controlled trials (RCTs). We searched for RCTs published up until September 2016. Retrieved trials were evaluated using risk of bias. Primary outcome measures were the incidences of any recurrent adenomas and of advanced adenomas. Meta-analytic estimates were calculated with the random-effects model and random errors were evaluated with trial sequential analyses (TSAs).
RESULTS: Five randomized trials (2234 patients with a history of adenomas) were included. Two of the 5 trials showed either unclear or high risks of bias in most criteria. Meta-analysis of good quality RCTs suggest a moderate protective effect of calcium supplementation on recurrence of adenomas (relative risk [RR], 0.88 [95% CI 0.79-0.99]); however, its effects on advanced adenomas did not show statistical significance (RR, 1.02 [95% CI 0.67-1.55]). Subgroup analyses demonstrated a greater protective effect on recurrence of adenomas with elemental calcium dose ≥1600 mg/day (RR, 0.74 [95% CI 0.56-0.97]) compared to ≤1200 mg/day (RR, 0.84 [95% CI 0.73-0.97]). No major serious adverse events were associated with the use of calcium, but there was an increase in the incidence of hypercalcemia (P = .0095). TSA indicated a lack of firm evidence for a beneficial effect. Concerns with directness and imprecision rated down the quality of the evidence to "low."
CONCLUSION: The available good quality RCTs suggests a possible beneficial effect of calcium supplementation on the recurrence of adenomas; however, TSA indicated that the accumulated evidence is still inconclusive. Using GRADE-methodology, we conclude that the quality of evidence is low. Large well-designed randomized trials with low risk of bias are needed.
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.