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Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1995 Feb 1;31(3):485-91.

Local tumor control in rhabdomyosarcoma following low-dose irradiation: comparison of group II and select group III patients.

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  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Hematology/Oncology, Biostatistics, and Surgery, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN 38105.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To determine whether low-dose irradiation (i.e., approximately 40 Gy at 1.5-1.8 Gy/fraction), which is associated with > or = 90% local control in children with initially resected rhabdomyosarcoma and microscopic residual [Intergroup Rhabdomyosarcoma (IRS) group II disease], achieves comparable results in children with locally advanced rhabdomyosarcoma (IRS group III) left with microscopic disease after induction chemotherapy with or without delayed surgery.

METHODS AND MATERIALS:

Among 103 patients entered on five successive studies between 1968 and 1991, 24 had evidence of microscopic residual disease after initial surgical resection (IRS group II) and received low-dose irradiation. Initial chemotherapy was used in 79 with IRS group III disease. In 28 of these 79 group III patients, chemotherapy alone (n = 16) or in combination with delayed surgery (n = 12) reduced disease to microscopic levels prior to the start of radiotherapy based upon which they received low-dose irradiation. All have a minimum 2-year follow-up and median age of 4 years. Primary tumor sites among the 24 with group II disease included: orbit (5), parameningeal (2), nonparameningeal head and neck (3), genitourinary: nonbladder/prostate (5), extremity (4), and other (5). Irradiation dose ranged from 32-50 Gy, with a median and modal dose of 40 Gy. Primary tumor sites among the 28 with group III disease selectively treated with low-dose irradiation included: orbit (1), parameningeal (6), nonparameningeal head and neck (4), genitourinary: bladder/prostate (12) and nonbladder/prostate (1), extremity (1), and other (3). Irradiation dose ranged from 33-52 Gy, with a median and modal dose of 40 Gy.

RESULTS:

Local disease control has been maintained in 23 of 24 patients (96%) with group II disease. Local control occurred in eight of nine (89%) group II patients receiving < 40 Gy and in all 15 receiving > or = 40 Gy (p = 0.26). Twenty (83%) are alive and free of disease. Twenty-two of the 28 patients (79%) with group III disease treated with low-dose irradiation have maintained continuous local control of disease which was not statistically different from the group II patients (p = 0.08). Local control occurred in 7 of 11 (64%) group III patients receiving < 40 Gy vs. 15 of 17 (88%) receiving > or = 40 Gy (p < = 0.14). Nineteen (68%) are alive and free of disease. Survival in these group III patients is significantly worse than that of the group II patients, with 19 (68%) alive and free of disease (p = 0.04).

CONCLUSION:

Children with locally advanced rhabdomyosarcoma (IRS group III) who have only microscopic disease after induction chemotherapy with or without delayed surgery have a high likelihood of achieving local control with low-dose irradiation. For this group, data suggest treatment to a dose level of at least 40 Gy.

Comment in

PMID:
7852110
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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