Indexed on: 25 Jan '17Published on: 25 Jan '17Published in: Strahlentherapie und Onkologie
To report acute and late toxicity with long-term follow-up, and to describe our experiences with pulmonary dose constraints.Between 2002 and 2009, 150 patients with 155 histologically/cytologically proven non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC; tumor stages II, IIIA, IIIB in 6, 55 and 39%, respectively) received the following median doses: primary tumors 79.2 Gy (range 72.0-90.0 Gy), lymph node metastases 59.4 Gy (54.0-73.8 Gy), nodes electively 45 Gy; with fractional doses of 1.8 Gy twice daily (bid). In all, 86% of patients received 2 cycles of chemotherapy previously.Five treatment-related deaths occurred: pneumonitis, n = 1; progressive pulmonary fibrosis in patients with pre-existing pulmonary fibrosis, n = 2; haemorrhage, n = 2. In all, 8% of patients experienced grade 3 and 1.3% grade 4 pneumonitis; 11% showed late fibrotic alterations grade 2 in lung parenchyma. Clinically relevant acute esophagitis (grade 2 and 3) was seen in 33.3% of patients, 2 patients developed late esophageal stenosis (G3). Patients with upper lobe, middle lobe and central lower lobe tumours (n = 130) were treated with V20 (total lung) up to 50% and patients with peripheral lower lobe tumours (n = 14, basal lateral tumours excluded) up to 42%, without observing acute or late pulmonary toxicity >grade 3. Only patients with basal lateral lower lobe tumours (n = 5) experienced grade 4/5 pulmonary toxicity; V20 for this latter group ranged between 30 and 53%. The mean lung dose was below the QUANTEC recommendation of 20-23 Gy in all patients. The median follow-up time of all patients is 26.3 months (range 2.9-149.4) and of patients alive 80.2 months (range 63.9-149.4.). The median overall survival time of all patients is 26.3 months; the 2-, 5- and 8‑year survival rates of 54, 21 and 15%, respectively. The local tumour control rate at 2 and 5 years is 70 and 64%, the regional control rate 90 and 88%, respectively.Grade 4 or 5 toxicity occurred in 7/150 patients (4.7%), which can be partially avoided in the future (e.g. by excluding patients with pre-existing pulmonary fibrosis). Tolerance and oncologic outcome compare favourably to concomitant chemoradiation also in long-term follow-up.