Intensity-modulated radiotherapy reduces gastrointestinal toxicity in patients treated with androgen deprivation therapy for prostate cancer

Navesh K. Sharma, Tianyu Li, David Y. Chen, Alan Pollack, Eric M. Horwitz, Mark K. Buyyounouski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Purpose: Androgen deprivation therapy (AD) has been shown to increase late Grade 2 or greater rectal toxicity when used concurrently with three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3D-CRT). Intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) has the potential to reduce toxicity by limiting the radiation dose received by the bowel and bladder. The present study compared the genitourinary and gastrointestinal (GI) toxicity in men treated with 3D-CRT+AD vs. IMRT+AD. Methods and Materials: Between July 1992 and July 2004, 293 men underwent 3D-CRT (n = 170) or IMRT (n = 123) with concurrent AD (<6 months, n = 123; ≥6 months, n = 170). The median radiation dose was 76 Gy for 3D-CRT (International Commission on Radiation Units and Measurements) and 76 Gy for IMRT (95% to the planning target volume). Toxicity was assessed by a patient symptom questionnaire that was completed at each visit and recorded using a Fox Chase Modified Late Effects Normal Tissue Task radiation morbidity scale. Results: The mean follow-up was 86 months (standard deviation, 29.3) for the 3D-CRT group and 40 months (standard deviation, 9.7) for the IMRT group. Acute GI toxicity (odds ratio, 4; 95% confidence interval, 1.6-11.7; p = .005) was significantly greater with 3D-CRT than with IMRT and was independent of the AD duration (i.e., <6 vs. ≥6 months). The interval to the development of late GI toxicity was significantly longer in the IMRT group. The 5-year Kaplan-Meier estimate for Grade 2 or greater GI toxicity was 20% for 3D-CRT and 8% for IMRT (p = .01). On multivariate analysis, Grade 2 or greater late GI toxicity (hazard ratio, 2.1; 95% confidence interval, 1.1-4.3; p = .04) was more prevalent in the 3D-CRT patients. Conclusion: Compared with 3D-CRT, IMRT significantly decreased the acute and late GI toxicity in patients treated with AD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)437-444
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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