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N Engl J Med. 2010 Feb 11;362(6):513-20. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa0906260.

Long-term results of hypofractionated radiation therapy for breast cancer.

Author information

1
McMaster University and Juravinski Cancer Centre, Hamilton, ON, Canada. tim.whelan@jcc.hhsc.ca

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The optimal fractionation schedule for whole-breast irradiation after breast-conserving surgery is unknown.

METHODS:

We conducted a study to determine whether a hypofractionated 3-week schedule of whole-breast irradiation is as effective as a 5-week schedule. Women with invasive breast cancer who had undergone breast-conserving surgery and in whom resection margins were clear and axillary lymph nodes were negative were randomly assigned to receive whole-breast irradiation either at a standard dose of 50.0 Gy in 25 fractions over a period of 35 days (the control group) or at a dose of 42.5 Gy in 16 fractions over a period of 22 days (the hypofractionated-radiation group).

RESULTS:

The risk of local recurrence at 10 years was 6.7% among the 612 women assigned to standard irradiation as compared with 6.2% among the 622 women assigned to the hypofractionated regimen (absolute difference, 0.5 percentage points; 95% confidence interval [CI], -2.5 to 3.5). At 10 years, 71.3% of women in the control group as compared with 69.8% of the women in the hypofractionated-radiation group had a good or excellent cosmetic outcome (absolute difference, 1.5 percentage points; 95% CI, -6.9 to 9.8).

CONCLUSIONS:

Ten years after treatment, accelerated, hypofractionated whole-breast irradiation was not inferior to standard radiation treatment in women who had undergone breast-conserving surgery for invasive breast cancer with clear surgical margins and negative axillary nodes. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00156052.)

PMID:
20147717
DOI:
10.1056/NEJMoa0906260
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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