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Cancer Radiother. 2003 Feb;7(1):62-72.

[Brachytherapy in head and neck cancers].

[Article in French]

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Centre des tumeurs, groupe hospitalier Pitié-Salpêtrière, 47-83, boulevard de l'hôpital, 75651 cedex 13, Paris, France. <>


Experience accumulated over several decades with radiation of Head and Neck tumours by irradiation has demonstrated the need for a high tumour dose to achieve local control. With external beam irradiation alone, it is difficult to spare adjacent normal tissues, resulting in undesirable late effects on the salivary glands, mandible, and muscles of mastication. Interstitial implantation is ideally suited to deliver a high dose limited to the volume of the primary tumor, thus minimizing sequels. A large experience has been accumulated with low dose rate (LDR) brachytherapy in treatment of carcinoma of oral cavity, oropharynx, and nasopharynx. Recent analysis of large clinical series provided data indicating that modalities of low dose rate brachytherapy should be optimized in treating these tumors for increasing therapeutic ratio. Low dose rate brachytherapy is now challenged by high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy and pulsed dose rate (PDR) brachytherapy. Preliminary results obtained with these two last modalities are discussed regarding to those of low dose rate brachytherapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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