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Brachytherapy. 2002;1(3):149-53.

Pulsed-dose rate brachytherapy with concomitant chemotherapy and interstitial hyperthermia in patients with recurrent head-and-neck cancer.

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Department of Radiation Therapy, University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany.



We attempted in our clinic to evaluate the efficacy and feasibility of a simultaneous application of a cis-platinum-based chemotherapy and interstitial hyperthermia to interstitial pulsed-dose rate (PDR) brachytherapy in patients with recurrent head-and-neck cancer.


Between April 1999 and September 2001, 15 patients with recurrent head-and-neck cancer were treated with PDR brachytherapy, chemotherapy, and interstitial hyperthermia. All patients had received prior radiation therapy. A dose per pulse of 0.46 to 0.55 Gy was given up to a median total dose of 55 Gy. Simultaneously to the PDR brachytherapy, chemotherapy was given with cis-platinum 20 mg/m2 as a short i.v. infusion each day and 5-fluorouracil 800 mg/m2 by continuous infusion from Day 1 to Day 5. After the PDR brachytherapy was finished, all patients were treated with a single session of interstitial hyperthermia.


All the patients could receive the whole treatment. After treatment, only mild oral mucositis occurred. One patient developed soft tissue ulceration. None of the patients developed osteoradionecrosis. After a median follow-up of 6 months, the local tumor control rate was 80% (12 of 15), and the 2-year overall survival was 67% (10 of 15).


The intensification of the interstitial PDR brachytherapy with chemotherapy and hyperthermia is feasible and safe, and the preliminary results are encouraging.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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