Results of multifield conformai radiation therapy of nonsmall-cell lung carcinoma using multileaf collimation beams

Sanjeev Bahri, John C. Flickinger, Andre M. Kalend, Melvin Deutsch, Chandra P. Belani, Frank C. Sciurba, James D. Luketich, Joel S. Greenberger

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16 Scopus citations


A five-field conformal technique with three-dimensional radiation therapy treatment planning (3-DRTP) has been shown to permit better definition of the target volume for lung cancer, while minimizing the normal tissue volume receiving greater than 50% of the target dose. In an initial study to confirm the safety of conventional doses, we used the five-field conformal 3-DRTP technique. We then used the technique in a second study, enhancing the therapeutic index in a series of 42 patients, as well as to evaluate feasibility, survival outcome, and treatment toxicity. Forty-two consecutive patients with nonsmall-cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) were evaluated during the years 1993-1997. The median age was 60 years (range 34-80). The median radiation therapy (RT) dose to the gross tumor volume was 6,300 cGy (range 5,000-6,840 cGy) delivered over 6 to 6.5 weeks in 180-275 cGy daily fractions, 5 days per week. There were three patients who received a split course treatment of 5,500 cGy in 20 fractions, delivering 275 cGy daily with a 2-week break built into the treatment course after 10 fractions. The stages of disease were II in 2%, IIIA in 40%, IIIB in 42.9%, and recurrent disease in 14.3% of the patients. The mean tumor volume was 324.14 cc (range 88.3-773.7 cc); 57.1% of the patients received combined chemoradiotherapy, while the others were treated with radiation therapy alone. Of the 42 patients, 7 were excluded from the final analysis because of diagnosis of distant metastasis during treatment. Two of the patients had their histology reinterpreted as being other than NSCLC, 2 patients did not complete RT at the time of analysis, and 1 patient voluntarily discontinued treatment because of progressive deterioration. Median follow-up was 11.2 months (range 3-32.5 months). Survival for patients with Stage III disease was 70.2% at 1 year and 51.5% at 2 years, with median survival not yet reached. Local control for the entire series was 23.3 ± 11.4% at 2 years. However, for Stage III patients, local control was 50% at 1 year and 30% at 2 years. Patients who received concurrent chemotherapy had significantly improved survival (P = 0.002) and local control (P = 0.004), compared with RT alone. Late esophageal toxicity of ≥Grade 3 occurred in 14.1 ± 9.3% of patients (3 of 20) receiving combined chemoradiotherapy, but in none of the 15 patients treated with RT alone. Pulmonary toxicity limited to Grades 1-2 occurred in 6.8% of the patients, and none developed ≥Grade 3 pulmonary toxicity. Patients with locally advanced NSCLC, who commonly have tumor volumes in excess of 200 cc, present a challenge for adequate dose delivery without significant toxicity. Our five-field conformal 3-DRTP technique, which incorporates treatment planning by dose/volume histogram (DVH) was associated with minimal toxicity and may facilitate dose escalation to the gross tumor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)297-308
Number of pages12
JournalRadiation Oncology Investigations
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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