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Radiother Oncol. 2015 Oct;117(1):132-8. doi: 10.1016/j.radonc.2015.09.007. Epub 2015 Sep 21.

Favorable patient reported outcomes following IMRT for early carcinomas of the tonsillar fossa: Results from a symptom assessment study.

Author information

1
Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA. Electronic address: gbgunn@mdanderson.org.
2
Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA; Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine, Lubbock, USA.
3
Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA.
4
Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA; Medical Physics Program, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Houston, USA.
5
Department of Radiation Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA; Department of Clinical Oncology, University of Alexandria, Egypt.
6
Department of Head and Neck Surgery, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA.
7
Department of Thoracic/Head & Neck Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA.
8
Department of Symptom Research, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

A questionnaire-based study was conducted to assess long-term patient reported outcomes (PROs) following definitive IMRT-based treatment for early stage carcinomas of the tonsillar fossa.

METHODS:

Participants had received IMRT with or without systemic therapy for squamous carcinoma of the tonsillar fossa (T1-2 and N0-2b) with a minimum follow-up of 2years. Patients completed a validated head and neck cancer-specific PRO instrument, the MD Anderson Symptom Inventory-Head and Neck module (MDASI-HN). Symptoms were compared between treatment groups of interest and overall symptom burden was evaluated.

RESULTS:

Of 139 participants analyzed, 51% had received ipsilateral neck IMRT, and 62% single modality IMRT alone (no systemic therapy). There were no differences in mean severity ratings for the top-ranked individual symptoms or symptom interference for those treated with bilateral versus ipsilateral neck IMRT alone. However, 40% of those treated with bilateral versus 25% of those treated with ipsilateral neck RT alone reported moderate-to-severe levels of dry mouth (p=0.03). Fatigue, numbness/tingling, and constipation were rated more severe for those who had received systemic therapy (p<0.05 for each), but absolute differences were small. Overall, 51% had no more than mild symptom ratings across all 22 symptoms assessed.

CONCLUSIONS:

The long-term patient reported symptom profile in this cohort of tonsil cancer survivors treated with definitive IMRT-based treatment showed a majority of patients with no more than mild symptoms, low symptom interference, and provides an opportunity for future comparison studies with other treatment approaches.

KEYWORDS:

IMRT; Patient reported outcomes; Symptoms; Tonsil cancer

PMID:
26403258
PMCID:
PMC4762263
DOI:
10.1016/j.radonc.2015.09.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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