ASTRO Annual Meeting
Boston, MA—In the United States right now, intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) has largely replaced 3-dimensional conformal radiation therapy as the technique of choice for most patients with organ-confined prostate cancer that is being treated with radiation as the primary therapy.
Another technique in use is brachytherapy, and, at some centers, proton beam therapy is being studied.
Boston, MA—The use of proton beam radiation therapy (PBRT) for the treatment of prostate cancer is increasing across the United States, but there is no evidence from randomized, controlled trials to suggest that PBRT is more effective than intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), which is the current standard of care. A study presented at the 2012 American Society for Radiation Oncology annual meeting found few differences in toxicity between the 2 techniques, but demonstrated that PBRT was associated with a 57% increase in median cost per patient.
Boston, MA—The patterns of use of radiotherapy have changed over time in elderly patients with stage I breast cancer, and these changes have financial implications for the healthcare system. In elderly patients with favorable-risk breast cancer, the use of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and brachytherapy steadily increased from 2001 to 2007, while the use of standard external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) decreased. Data are lacking on whether the newer technologies improve outcomes in this patient population.
Miami, FL—Delivering higher doses of external-beam radiation over a shorter period (hypofractionated radiation) was as effective as conventional radiation in preventing treatment failure in men with intermediate- to high-risk prostate cancer. The hypofractionated regimen shortened treatment time by 2.5 weeks compared with conventional radiation. However, the frequency of grade 2 or higher genitourinary (GU) adverse events, particularly urinary incontinence, was much higher with the hypofractionated regimen in a phase 3 trial presented at the meeting.
believe that errors and near-misses of radiation treatment should be reported, but this does not always happen, according to a study of survey results from 4 academic radiation oncology practices that was presented at the 2011 American Society for Radiation Oncology meeting.
Miami, FL—A regimen of high-dose radiation had no survival advantage over standard radiation with concurrent chemotherapy in patients with advanced unresectable non–smallcell lung cancer (NSCLC) that had spread to the lymph nodes, according to an interim analysis of a late-breaking study presented at the 2011 American Society for Radiation Oncology meeting.
The phase 3 RTOG 0617 trial showed that overall survival was 74% in the high-dose group versus 81% in the standard-dose arm, and median survival was 22 months versus 20 months, respectively.
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