Send to

Choose Destination
Cancer Radiother. 2005 Feb;9(1):31-6. Epub 2005 Jan 12.

[Individual patient data meta-analyses in head and neck carcinoma: what have we learnt?].

[Article in French]

Author information

Service de biostatistique et d'épidémiologie, département de chirurgie cervicofaciale, département de radiothérapie, institut Gustave-Roussy, 39, rue Camille-Desmoulins, 94805 Villejuif, France.


Carcinoma of the upper aerodigestive tract (oral cavity, oropharynx, hypopharynx, nasopharynx, larynx) are frequent tumors for which surgery and/or radiotherapy are the main therapeutic agents. The main results of meta-analyses based on the collection of individual patients data are reported: 1) The meta-analysis on chemotherapy, regrouping data of nearly 11,000 patients issued from 63 randomized trials showed an absolute benefit of 4% at five years in overall survival, in favor of chemotherapy (P<0.0001). Most of the benefit was seen with concomitant radiochemotherapy, however with a relatively large heterogeneity in this subgroup of trials. An update of this meta-analysis was performed including 24 additional trials, which confirmed the magnitude of the benefit due to concomitant chemotherapy (8% at 5 years). 2) The meta-analysis on larynx preservation, using induction chemotherapy in larynx and hypopharynx carcinomas. No significant difference was seen between the control arm with total laryngectomy and the larynx preservation approach. 3) The meta-analysis on chemotherapy in nasopharynx carcinomas, from the data of 11 randomized trials including 2722 patients, and comparing the radiotherapy to radio-chemotherapy (1979-2001). The results showed an absolute benefit of 6% at five years in overall survival, in favor of chemotherapy (P<0.0001). Most of the benefit was seen with concomitant radiochemotherapy. 4) Finally, a meta-analysis on altered fractionated RT, compared to conventional RT in 15 randomized trials regrouping 6515 patients. The results showed a small but significant improvement in favor of altered fractionated RT for overall survival and local control with an absolute benefit at five years of 3 and 6%, respectively.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center