5-hydroxytryptamine-3 receptor antagonist with or without short-course dexamethasone in the prophylaxis of radiation induced emesis: a placebo-controlled randomized trial of the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group (SC19).
To evaluate the effectiveness of prophylactic dexamethasone for the control of radiation induced emesis (RIE) when added to ondansetron during days 1 to 5 of fractionated radiotherapy. The study had two hypotheses: ondansetron and dexamethasone could provide superior control of RIE over ondansetron alone during the prophylactic period and; the combination could provide sustained control of RIE during subsequent fractions of radiotherapy.
Between May 2001 to Jan 2004, 211 patients receiving radiotherapy (> or = 15 fractions) to the upper abdomen were randomly assigned to receive ondansetron 8 mg bid with either dexamethasone 4 mg daily or placebo during fractions 1 to 5. Rescue antiemetics were provided.
During the prophylactic period there was a trend for improved complete control of nausea in the dexamethasone arm (50% v 38%; P = .06) while complete and partial control of emesis, average nausea score, and use of rescue medications were similar in the two groups. During the overall study period patients receiving dexamethasone had better complete control of emesis (23% v 12%; P = .02) and a lower average nausea score (0.28 v 0.39; P = .03); there was a trend towards less use of rescue medications with dexamethasone (70% v 80%; P = .09); other outcomes were similar on the two arms. Quality of life analysis showed a significant difference in appetite.
The addition of dexamethasone to ondansetron as prophylaxis provides a modest improvement in protection against RIE during moderately emetogenic fractionated radiotherapy. It is a potentially useful addition to 5-hydroxytryptamine-3 receptor antagonists in this setting.
Significantly lower frequency of relapse, incidence of pulmonitis and pericarditis, leukopenia and thrombocytopenia stage IV and longer recurrence-free survival were reported after acceleration of multifractionation of STD of 1.35Gy was used for treatment of patients with primary Hodgkin's disease, as compared with standard fractionation. When STD was reduced to 1.2Gy (modified multifractionation), subtotal exposure of lymph nodes was followed by a significant drop in frequency and severity of leukopenia and thrombocytopenia stage III-IV. The latter complications, rates decreased further, with perspective response to therapy, as irradiation was limited to that of areas exposed during modified multifractionation.
The Chernobyl accident resulted in a number of cases of thyroid cancer in females under the age of 20 y. Many of these individuals were treated with surgical removal of the thyroid gland followed by 131I ablation of residual thyroid tissue. Epidemiologic evidence demonstrates that 131I treatment for thyroid cancer or hyperthyroidism in adult women confers negligible risk of breast cancer. However, comparable data for younger women do not exist. Studies of external radiation exposure indicate that, for radiation exposures of as low as 0.2-0.7 Gy, the risk of breast cancer is greater for infant and adolescent female breast tissues than for adult female breast tissues. METHODS: The effective half-time of 131I measured in athyrotic patients was used together with the OLINDA/EXM computer code to estimate doses to breast tissue in 10-y-old, 15-y-old, and young adult females from ablation treatment. RESULTS: The dose to pediatric and young adult female breast tissue associated with a 5.6-GBq (150 mCi) ablation treatment may range from 0.35 to 0.55 Gy, resulting in a lifetime risk of breast cancer ranging from 2-4 cases per 100 such individuals exposed and a lifetime risk of solid tumors ranging from 8 to 17 solid tumors per 100 such individuals exposed. Administration of multiple ablation treatments, as often occurs with metastases, could result in doses ranging from 0.7 to 1 Gy, with corresponding increases in the lifetime cancer risk. CONCLUSION: These estimates suggest the need for additional research and a possible need for surveillance of young Chernobyl thyroid cancer patients who received 131I ablation treatment.
BACKGROUND: The risk of contralateral breast cancer is increased twofold to fivefold for breast cancer patients. A registry-based cohort study in Denmark suggested that radiation treatment of the first breast cancer might increase the risk for contralateral breast cancer among 10-year survivors. PURPOSE: Our goal was to assess the role of radiation in the development of contralateral breast cancer. METHODS: A nested case-control study was conducted in a cohort of 56,540 women in Denmark diagnosed with invasive breast cancer from 1943 through 1978. Case patients were 529 women who developed contralateral breast cancer 8 or more years after first diagnosis. Controls were women with breast cancer who did not develop contralateral breast cancer. One control was matched to each case patient on the basis of age, calendar year of initial breast cancer diagnosis, and survival time. Radiation dose to the contralateral breast was estimated for each patient on the basis of radiation measurements and abstracted treatment information. The anatomical position of each breast cancer was also abstracted from medical records. RESULTS: Radiotherapy had been administered to 82.4% of case patients and controls, and the mean radiation dose to the contralateral breast was estimated to be 2.51 Gy. Radiotherapy did not increase the overall risk of contralateral breast cancer (relative risk = 1.04; 95% confidence interval = 0.74-1.46), and there was no evidence that risk varied with radiation dose, time since exposure, or age at exposure. The second tumors in case patients were evenly distributed in the medial, lateral, and central portions of the breast, a finding that argues against a causal role of radiotherapy in tumorigenesis. CONCLUSIONS: The majority of women in our series were perimenopausal or postmenopausal (53% total versus 38% premenopausal and 9% of unknown status) and received radiotherapy at an age when the breast tissue appears least susceptible to the carcinogenic effects of radiation. Based on a dose of 2.51 Gy and estimates of radiation risk from other studies, a relative risk of only 1.18 would have been expected for a population of women exposed at an average age of 51 years. Thus, our data provide additional evidence that there is little if any risk of radiation-induced breast cancer associated with exposure of breast tissue to low-dose radiation (e.g., from mammographic x rays or adjuvant radiotherapy) in later life.
Between 1971 and 1985, 598 patients with ovarian carcinoma were treated with abdomino-pelvic radiation therapy. Acute complications included nausea and vomiting in 364 patients (61%) which were severe in 36, and diarrhea in 407 patients (68%), severe in 35. Leukopenia (less than 2.0 x 10(9) cells/liter) and thrombocytopenia (less than 100 x 10(9) cells/liter) occurred in 64 patients (11%) each. Treatment interruptions occurred in 136 patients (23%), and 62 patients (10%) did not complete treatment. In both situations the most common cause was myelosuppression. Late complications included chronic diarrhea in 85 patients (14%), transient hepatic enzyme elevation in 224 (44%), and symptomatic basal pneumonitis in 23 (4%). Serious late bowel complications were infrequent: 25 patients (4.2%) developed bowel obstruction and 16 required operation. Multivariate analysis was unable to determine any significant prognostic factors for bowel obstruction; however, the moving-strip technique of radiation therapy was associated with a significantly greater risk of developing chronic diarrhea, pneumonitis, and hepatic enzyme elevation than was the open beam technique. We conclude that abdomino-pelvic radiation therapy as used in these patients is associated with modest acute complications and a low risk of serious late toxicity.
We investigated the occurrence of thyroid and parathyroid disorders in 100 women (age 66-70 years) irradiated for cervical spondylosis on average 25 years previously and in 100 control women of similar age. Hyperparathyroidism (HPT), proven by operation, was diagnosed in one patient of each group, and three additional cases were diagnosed biochemically among irradiated women. The difference in incidence is not significant. Nor was there any significant difference in incidence of thyroid disorders. No thyroid carcinoma was found in either group. Even if there is a moderate increase of HPT after neck irradiation in middle-aged women the risk is not so great as to warrant organised follow-up.
We evaluated the risk of angiosarcoma after radiotherapy among all patients with cancers of breast, cervix uteri, corpus uteri, lung, ovary, prostate, or rectum, and lymphoma diagnosed in Finland during 1953-2003, identified from the Finnish Cancer Registry. Only angiosarcomas of the trunk were considered, this being the target of radiotherapy for the first cancer. In the follow-up of 1.8 million person-years at risk, 19 angiosarcomas developed, all after breast and gynaecological cancer. Excess of angiosarcomas over national incidence rates were observed after radiotherapy without chemotherapy (standardised incidence ratio (SIR) 6.0, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.7-11), after both radiotherapy and chemotherapy (SIR 100, 95% CI 12-360), and after other treatments (SIR 3.6, 95% CI 1.6-7.1). In the regression analysis however, the adjusted rate ratio for radiotherapy was 1.0 (95% CI 0.23-4.4). Although an increased risk of angiosarcoma among cancer patients is evident, especially with breast and gynaecological cancer, the excess does not appear to be strongly related to radiotherapy.