The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy of a single implant with two fractions plus external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) for hormone-naïve prostate cancer in comparison with radical prostatectomy. Of 150 patients with localized prostate cancer (T1c–T2c), 59 underwent HDR brachytherapy plus EBRT, and 91 received radical prostatectomy. The median follow-up of patients was 62 months for HDR brachytherapy plus EBRT, and 64 months for radical prostatectomy. In patient backgrounds between the two cohorts, the frequency of T2b plus T2c was greater in HDR brachytherapy cohort than in prostatectomy cohort (27% versus 12%, p = 0.029). Patients in HDR brachytherapy cohort first underwent 3D conformal RT with four beams to the prostate to an isocentric dose of 50 Gy in 25 fractions and then, a total of 15–18 Gy in two fractions at least 5 hours apart. We prescribed 9 Gy/fraction for target (prostate gland plus 3 mm lateral outside margin and seminal vesicle) using CT image method for radiation planning. The total biochemical failure-free control rates (BF-FCR) at 3 and 5 years for the HDR brachytherapy cohort, and for the prostatectomy cohort were 92% and 85%, and 72% and 72%, respectively (significant difference, p = 0.0012). The 3-and 5-year BF-FCR in the HDR brachytherapy cohort and in the prostatectomy cohort by risk group was 100 and 100%, and 80 and 80%, respectively, for the low-risk group (p = 0.1418); 92 and 92%, 73 and 73%, respectively, for the intermediate-risk group (p = 0.0492); and 94 and 72%, 45 and 45%, respectively, for the high-risk group (p = 0.0073). After HDR brachytherapy plus EBRT, no patient experienced Grade 2 or greater genitourinay toxicity. The rate of late Grade 1 and 2 GI toxicity was 6% (n = 4). No patient experienced Grade 3 GI toxicity. HDR brachytherapy plus EBRT is useful for treating patients with hormone-naïve localized prostate cancer, and has low GU and GI toxicities.
prostate cancer; high dose rate brachytherapy; external beam radiation therapy; radical prostatectomy
To determine predictors of distant metastases (DM) in prostate cancer patients treated with high dose rate brachytherapy boost (HDR-B) and external beam radiation therapy (EBRT).
Material and methods
From 1991 to 2002, 768 men with localized prostate cancer were treated with HDR-B and EBRT. The mean EBRT dose was 37.5 Gy (range: 30.6-45 Gy), and the HDR-B was 22 or 24 Gy delivered in 4 fractions. Univariate and multivariate analyses using a Cox proportional hazards model including age at diagnosis, T stage, Gleason score (GS), pretreatment PSA, biologically equivalent dose (BED), and use of androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) was used to determine predictors of developing distant metastases.
The median follow-up time for the entire patient population was 4.2 years (range: 1-11.2 years). Distant metastases were identified in 22/768 (3%) of patients at a median of 4.1 years. PSA failure according to the Phoenix definition developed in 3%, 5%, and 14% of men with low, intermediate, and high risk disease with a median time to failure of 3.8 years. Prostate cancer specific mortality was observed in 2% of cases. T stage, GS, and use of ADT were significantly associated with developing DM on univariate analysis. GS, and use of ADT were the only factors significantly associated with developing DM on multivariate analysis (p < 0.01). Patients who received ADT had significantly higher risk features suggesting patient selection bias for higher DM in this group of patients rather than a negative interaction between HDR-B and EBRT.
In men treated with HDR-B and EBRT, GS is a significant factor on multivariate analysis for developing distant metastasis.
brachytherapy; distant metastases; high-dose-rate; prostate cancer
The best management of localized and locally advanced prostate cancer remains controversial, but there are clinical evidences that for patients considered of unfavorable outcome that dose escalation radiotherapy has a significantly better outcome. Methods: Between 2005-2009 a total of 39 unfavorable patients were treated in a phase I-II trial for dose escalation with high-dose rate (HDR)- 30 Gy given by 4 fractions BID, in two separated implants and hypofractionated conformal/tri-dimensional radiotherapy (hEBRT) - 45 Gy (3 Gy per fraction in 3 weeks), at Hospital AC Camargo, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Results: Median age of patients was 69 (range, 58-80) years old. With a median follow up of 42.5 months the highest RTOG acute severe genitourinary toxicity (GU-TX) was grade 3 in two (5.1%) patients. Late severe GU-TX was observed in one (2.6%) patient. On univariate analysis the prostate volume > 45cc (p=0.024), <11 needles per implant (p=0.038) and urethral dose >130% of prescribed dose (p<0,001) were statistical significant predictive factors. Multivariate analysis showed urethral dose >130% as the only predictive factor for late severe GU-TX, p=0.017 (95%CI-1.39-29.49), HR-6.4. The actuarial overall survival, biochemical control and disease specific survival rates for the entire group at 3.5-years were 92.0%, 87.6% and 96.9%, respectively. Conclusion: HDR combined to hEBRT is well tolerated in the short and medium term. Acute toxicity was minimal and improved outcomes in terms of reduced late toxicity can be achieved using at least 11 needles and prostate with no more than 45cc to be implanted. The maximum urethral dose should be kept bellow 130% of prescribed dose.
Prostate cancer; radiotherapy; brachytherapy; toxicity; biochemical control
The outcome of patients after radiotherapy (RT) for localized prostate cancer in case of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) progression during primary hormonal therapy (HT) is not well known.
A group of 27 patients presenting with PSA progression during primary HT for local prostate cancer RT was identified among patients who were treated in the years 2000–2004 either using external-beam RT (EBRT; 70.2Gy; n=261) or Ir-192 brachytherapy as a boost to EBRT (HDR-BT; 18Gy + 50.4Gy; n=71). The median follow-up period after RT was 68 months.
Median biochemical recurrence free (BRFS), disease specific (DSS) and overall survival (OS) for patients with PSA progression during primary HT was found to be only 21, 54 and 53 months, respectively, with a 6-year BRFS, DSS and OS of 19%, 41% and 26%. There were no significant differences between different RT concepts (6-year OS of 27% after EBRT and 20% after EBRT with HDR-BT).
Considering all 332 patients in multivariate Cox regression analysis, PSA progression during initial HT, Gleason score>6 and patient age were found to be predictive for lower OS (p<0.001). The highest hazard ratio resulted for PSA progression during initial HT (7.2 in comparison to patients without PSA progression during primary HT). PSA progression and a nadir >0.5 ng/ml during initial HT were both significant risk factors for biochemical recurrence.
An unfavourable prognosis after PSA progression during initial HT needs to be considered in the decision process before local prostate radiotherapy. Results from other centres are needed to validate our findings.
Prostate cancer; Radiotherapy; Brachytherapy; Ir-192; Prostate-specific antigen; Hormone therapy
Brachytherapy plays a significant role in the management of cervical cancer, but the clinical significance of brachytherapy in the management of vaginal cancer remains to be defined. Thus, a single institutional experience in the treatment of primary invasive vaginal carcinoma was reviewed to define the role of brachytherapy. We retrospectively reviewed the charts of 36 patients with primary vaginal carcinoma who received definitive radiotherapy between 1992 and 2010. The treatment modalities included high-dose-rate intracavitary brachytherapy alone (HDR-ICBT; two patients), external beam radiation therapy alone (EBRT; 14 patients), a combination of EBRT and HDR-ICBT (10 patients), or high-dose-rate interstitial brachytherapy (HDR-ISBT; 10 patients). The median follow-up was 35.2 months. The 2-year local control rate (LCR), disease-free survival (DFS), and overall survival (OS) were 68.8%, 55.3% and 73.9%, respectively. The 2-year LCR for Stage I, II, III and IV was 100%, 87.5%, 51.5% and 0%, respectively (P = 0.007). In subgroup analysis consisting only of T2–T3 disease, the use of HDR-ISBT showed marginal significance for favorable 5-year LCR (88.9% vs 46.9%, P = 0.064). One patient each developed Grade 2 proctitis, Grade 2 cystitis, and a vaginal ulcer. We conclude that brachytherapy can play a central role in radiation therapy for primary vaginal cancer. Combining EBRT and HDR-ISBT for T2–T3 disease resulted in good local control.
primary vaginal cancer; radiation therapy; high-dose-rate brachytherapy; intracavitary brachytherapy; interstitial brachytherapy
To report early observation of transient PSA elevations on this pilot study of external beam radiation therapy and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) guided high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy boost.
Materials and methods
Eleven patients with intermediate-risk and high-risk localized prostate cancer received MRI guided HDR brachytherapy (10.5 Gy each fraction) before and after a course of external beam radiotherapy (46 Gy). Two patients continued on hormones during follow-up and were censored for this analysis. Four patients discontinued hormone therapy after RT. Five patients did not receive hormones. PSA bounce is defined as a rise in PSA values with a subsequent fall below the nadir value or to below 20% of the maximum PSA level. Six previously published definitions of biochemical failure to distinguish true failure from were tested: definition 1, rise >0.2 ng/mL; definition 2, rise >0.4 ng/mL; definition 3, rise >35% of previous value; definition 4, ASTRO defined guidelines, definition 5 nadir + 2 ng/ml, and definition 6, nadir + 3 ng/ml.
Median follow-up was 24 months (range 18–36 mo). During follow-up, the incidence of transient PSA elevation was: 55% for definition 1, 44% for definition 2, 55% for definition 3, 33% for definition 4, 11% for definition 5, and 11% for definition 6.
We observed a substantial incidence of transient elevations in PSA following combined external beam radiation and HDR brachytherapy for prostate cancer. Such elevations seem to be self-limited and should not trigger initiation of salvage therapies. No definition of failure was completely predictive.
To evaluate local disease control and early complications of concomitant brachytherapy with external beam-radiotherapy in early stage carcinoma cervix.
Fifty patients of early stage carcinoma cervix (FIGO-IB/IIA) were randomly divided into study group concomitant external beam irradiation (EBRT) and HDR-ICBT (intra-cavitary brachytherapy, xrt = 50 Gy/25 Fr, HDR 5.2 Gy*5 Fr) and the control group EBRT followed by HDR-ICBT (xrt = 50 Gy/25 Fr, HDR 7.5 Gy*3 Fr). Acute reactions and local disease response were compared between treatment and at 6-month follow up.
Median overall treatment times were 38 and 61 days in the study and the control groups, respectively. Acute skin reactions and diarrhea were more in the study but manageable. At the completion of the study, there were 80 and 68 % complete responses, 16 and 20 % partial responses, 0 and 8 % stable diseases in the study group and the control group, respectively.
Response was better in the study group but statistically insignificant. Larger number of patients and longer follow up are required to arrive at concrete conclusion.
Concurrent; High dose rate intracavitary brachytherapy; Carcinoma cervix; External beam radiotherapy
AIM: To determine the feasibility and safety of high dose rate intraluminal brachytherapy (HDR-ILBT) boost during preoperative chemoradiation for rectal cancer.
METHODS: Between 2008 and 2009, thirty-six patients with locally advanced rectal cancer (≥ T3 or N+), were treated initially with concurrent capecitabine (825 mg/m2 oral twice daily) and pelvic external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) (45 Gy in 25 fractions), then were randomized to group A; HDR-ILBT group (n = 17) to receive 5.5-7 Gy × 2 to gross tumor volume (GTV) and group B; EBRT group (n = 19) to receive 5.4 Gy × 3 fractions to GTV with EBRT. All patients underwent total mesorectal excision.
RESULTS: Grade 3 acute toxicities were registered in 12 patients (70.6%) in group A and in 8 (42.1%) in group B. Complete pathologic response of T stage (ypT0) in group A was registered in 10 patients (58.8%) and in group B, 3 patients (15.8%) had ypT0 (P < 0.0001). Sphincter preservation was reported in 6/9 patients (66.7%) in group A and in 5/10 patients (50%) in group B (P < 0.01). Overall radiological response was 68.15% and 66.04% in Group A and B, respectively. During a median follow up of 18 mo, late grade 1 and 2 sequelae were registered in 3 patients (17.6%) and 4 patients (21.1%) in the groups A and B, respectively.
CONCLUSION: HDR-ILBT was found to be effective dose escalation technique in preoperative chemoradiation for rectal cancers, with higher response rates, downstaging and with manageable acute toxicities.
High dose rate; Intraluminal brachytherapy boost; Locally advanced rectal cancer; Preoperative chemoradiation
The optimal dosimetric parameters and planning techniques for high-dose-rate vaginal brachytherapy (HDR-VB) are unclear. Our aim was to evaluate the utility of bladder and rectal dosimetry for patients receiving HDR-VB for postoperative treatment of endometrial carcinoma.
Material and methods
Patients with endometrial cancer who underwent postoperative HDR-VB from January 1, 2004 through December 31, 2010 were included. All patients underwent primary surgery consisting of total hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophrectomy (TH-BSO) with or without lymph node dissection and were treated with HDR-VB without pelvic external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) or chemotherapy. Demographic, pathologic, dosimetric and clinical data were collected.
One hundred patients were identified with the majority of patients receiving HDR-VB in 700 cGy × 3 fractions (45%) or 550 cGy x 4 fractions (53%). No plan was altered based on bladder dosimetry at the time of planning. The rate of acute urinary reactions (< 90 days from beginning of RT) grades 1 and 2 were 14% and 2%, respectively. The rate of late urinary reactions (> 90 days after RT) grades 1 and 2 were 7% and 3%, respectively. Dose to the bladder point did not correlate with urinary toxicity. No rectal toxicity was reported by patients receiving HDR-VB.
In the setting of HDR-VB without EBRT, the measured dose to the bladder point does not predict urinary toxicity and is very unlikely to indicate the need to change the treatment plan. The treatment of endometrial carcinoma utilizing HDR-VB alone is associated with very low rates of high-grade acute or late bladder toxicity.
endometrial cancer; high-dose-rate; brachytherapy
Permanent low-dose-rate (LDR-BT) and temporary high-dose-rate (HDR-BT) brachytherapy are competitive techniques for clinically localized prostate radiotherapy. Although a randomized trial will likely never to be conducted comparing these two forms of brachytherapy, a comparative analysis proves useful in understanding some of their intrinsic differences, several of which could be exploited to improve outcomes. The aim of this paper is to look for possible similarities and differences between both brachytherapy modalities. Indications and contraindications for monotherapy and for brachytherapy as a boost to external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) are presented. It is suggested that each of these techniques has attributes that advocates for one or the other. First, they represent the extreme ends of the spectrum with respect to dose rate and fractionation, and therefore have inherently different radiobiological properties. Low-dose-rate brachytherapy has the great advantage of being practically a one-time procedure, and enjoys a long-term follow-up database supporting its excellent outcomes and low morbidity. Low-dose-rate brachytherapy has been a gold standard for prostate brachytherapy in low risk patients since many years. On the other hand, HDR is a fairly invasive procedure requiring several sessions associated with a brief hospital stay. Although lacking in significant long-term data, it possesses the technical advantage of control over its postimplant dosimetry (by modulating the source dwell time and position), which is absent in LDR brachytherapy. This important difference in dosimetric control allows HDR doses to be escalated safely, a flexibility that does not exist for LDR brachytherapy.
Radiobiological models support the current clinical evidence for equivalent outcomes in localized prostate cancer with either LDR or HDR brachytherapy, using current dose regimens. At present, all available clinical data regarding these two techniques suggests that they are equally effective, stage for stage, in providing high tumor control rates.
brachytherapy; HDR; LDR; prostate cancer; seeds
Treatment of cervical cancer includes combination of external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) and brachytherapy (BRT). Traditionally, coronal images displaying dose distribution from a ring and tandem (R&T) implant aid in construction of parametrial boost fields. This research aimed to evaluate a method of shaping parametrial fields utilizing contours created from the high-dose-rate (HDR) BRT dose distribution.
Eleven patients receiving HDR-BRT via R&T were identified. The BRT and EBRT CT scans were sent to FocalSim (v4.62)® and fused based on bony anatomy. The contour of the HDR isodose line was transferred to the EBRT scan. The EBRT scan was sent to CMS-XIO (v4.62)® for planning. This process provides an automated, potentially more accurate method of matching the medial parametrial border to the HDR dose distribution. This allows for a 3D-view of dose from HDR-BRT for clinical decision-making, utilizes a paperless process and saves time over the traditional technique.
brachytherapy; cervical cancer; combined modality
Patients with high Gleason score, elevated prostate specific antigen (PSA) level, and advanced clinical stage are at increased risk for both local and systemic relapse. Recent data suggests higher radiation doses decrease local recurrence and may ultimately benefit biochemical, metastasis-free and disease-specific survival. No randomized data is available on the benefits of long-term hormonal therapy (HT) in these patients. A prospective study on the efficacy and safety of trimodality treatment consisting of HT, external beam radiation therapy (EBRT), and brachytherapy (BT) for high-risk prostate cancer (PCa) is strongly required.
This is a phase III, multicenter, randomized controlled trial (RCT) of trimodality with BT, EBRT, and HT for high-risk PCa (TRIP) that will investigate the impact of adjuvant HT following BT using iodine-125 (125I-BT) and supplemental EBRT with neoadjuvant and concurrent HT. Prior to the end of September 2012, a total of 340 patients with high-risk PCa will be enrolled and randomized to one of two treatment arms. These patients will be recruited from more than 41 institutions, all of which have broad experience with 125I-BT. Pathological slides will be centrally reviewed to confirm patient eligibility. The patients will commonly undergo 6-month HT with combined androgen blockade (CAB) before and during 125I-BT and supplemental EBRT. Those randomly assigned to the long-term HT group will subsequently undergo 2 years of adjuvant HT with luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone agonist. All participants will be assessed at baseline and every 3 months for the first 30 months, then every 6 months until 84 months from the beginning of CAB.
The primary endpoint is biochemical progression-free survival. Secondary endpoints are overall survival, clinical progression-free survival, disease-specific survival, salvage therapy non-adaptive interval, and adverse events.
To our knowledge, there have been no prospective studies documenting the efficacy and safety of trimodality therapy for high-risk PCa. The present RCT is expected to provide additional insight regarding the potency and limitations of the addition of 2 years of adjuvant HT to this trimodality approach, and to establish an appropriate treatment strategy for high-risk PCa.
Prostate cancer; Trimodality; Radiation therapy; Brachytherapy; External beam radiation therapy; Hormone therapy; Randomized controlled trial; Biochemical progression-free survival
This study was performed to evaluate the treatment results, prognostic factors and complication rates in patients with locally advanced cancer of uterine cervix after radiotherapy with high-dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy.
Materials and Methods
One hundred and twenty patients with a locally advanced (stages IIB~IVA according to FIGO classification) carcinoma of the uterine cervix were treated with radiotherapy at the Department of Radiation Oncology, Samsung Medical Center between September 1994 and December 2001. The median age of the patients was 61 years (range 29 to 81). Sixty-one, 56 and 3 patients had FIGO stage IIB, III, and IV diseases, respectively. All patients were given external beam radiotherapy over the whole pelvis (median 50.4 Gy) and HDR intracavitary brachytherapy, with a median of 4 Gy per fraction, to point A. Twenty-one patients received chemotherapy, of which 13 and 21 received neoadjuvant chemotherapy and concurrent chemotherapy, respectively, during the first and fourth weeks of external beam radiotherapy. The chemotherapy was not randomly assigned and the median follow-up time was 28.5 months (range: 6~100 months).
The three- and 5-year overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) rates were 64.4 and 57.0%, and 63.7 and 60.2%, respectively. The 5-year OS and DFS rates of the patients at stages IIB, III and IV were 60.2, 57.9 and 33.3%, and 57.4, 65.4 and 33.3%, respectively. Univariate analysis indicated that the FIGO stage, overall treatment time (OTT) and treatment response were significant variables for the OS (p=0.035, p=0.0649 and p=0.0009) and of the DFS (p=0.0009, p=0.0359 and p=0.0363). Multivariate analysis showed that the treatment response was the only significant variable for the OS (p=0.0018) and OTT for the DFS (p=0.0360). The overall incidence of late complications in the rectum and bladder were 11.7 and 6.7%, respectively. In addition, insufficiency fractures were observed in 7 patients (5.8%).
The results of this study suggest that radical radiotherapy with HDR brachytherapy was appropriate for the treatment of locally advanced uterine cervix cancer. Also, the response after treatment and OTT are significant prognostic factors.
Radiotherapy; Advanced cancer of the uterine cervix; High-dose rate brachytherapy
To assess whether an expanded (five level) risk stratification system can be used to identify the sub-group of intermediate risk patients with prostate cancer who benefit from combining androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT).
Materials and methods
Using a previously validated 5-risk group schema, a prospective non-randomized data set of 1423 men treated at the British Columbia Cancer Agency was assessed for the primary end point of biochemical control (bNED) with the RTOG-ASTRO "Phoenix" definition (lowest PSA to date + 2 ng/mL), both with and without adjuvant ADT. The median follow-up was 5 years.
There was no bNED benefit for ADT in the low or low intermediate groups but there was a statistically significant bNED benefit in the high intermediate, high and extreme risk groups. The 5-year bNED rates with and without ADT were 70% and 73% respectively for the low intermediate group (p = non-significant) and 72% and 58% respectively for the high intermediate group (p = 0.002).
There appears to be no advantage to ADT where the Gleason score is 6 or less and PSA is 15 or less. ADT is beneficial in patients treated to standard dose radiation with Gleason 6 disease and a PSA greater than 15 or where the Gleason score is 7 or higher.
Radical radiotherapy is one of the options for the management of prostate cancer. In external beam therapy, 3D conformal radiotherapy (3DCRT) and intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) are the options for delivery of increased radiation dose, as vital organs are very close to the prostate and a higher dose to these structures leads to an increased toxicity. In brachytherapy, low dose rate brachytherapy with permanent implant of radioactive seeds and high dose rate brachytherapy (HDR) with remote after loaders are available. A dosimetric analysis has been made on IMRT and HDR brachytherapy plans. Ten cases from each IMRT and HDR brachytherapy have been taken for the study. The analysis includes comparison of conformity and homogeneity indices, D100, D95, D90, D80, D50, D10 and D5 of the target. For the organs at risk (OAR), namely rectum and bladder, V100, V90 and V50 are compared. In HDR brachytherapy, the doses to 1 cc and 0.1 cc of urethra have also been studied. Since a very high dose surrounds the source, the 300% dose volumes in the target and within the catheters are also studied in two plans, to estimate the actual volume of target receiving dose over 300%. This study shows that the prescribed dose covers 93 and 92% of the target volume in IMRT and HDR brachytherapy respectively. HDR brachytherapy delivers a much lesser dose to OAR, compared to the IMRT. For rectum, the V50 in IMRT is 34.0cc whilst it is 7.5cc in HDR brachytherapy. With the graphic optimization tool in HDR brachytherapy planning, the dose to urethra could be kept within 120% of the target dose. Hence it is concluded that HDR brachytherapy may be the choice of treatment for cancer of prostate in the early stage.
Brachytherapy; conformity; intensity modulated radiotherapy; prostate
To evaluate the influence of the maximum involvement of biopsy core (MIBC) on outcome for prostate cancer patients treated with dose-escalated external beam radiotherapy (EBRT).
Methods and materials
The outcomes of 590 men with localized prostate cancer treated with EBRT (≥75 Gy) at a single institution were retrospectively analyzed. The influence of MIBC on freedom from biochemical failure (FFBF), freedom from metastasis (FFM), cause-specific survival (CSS), and overall survival (OS) was compared to other surrogates for biopsy tumor volume, including the percentage of positive biopsy cores (PPC) and the total percentage of cancer volume (PCV).
MIBC correlated with PSA, T-stage, Gleason score, NCCN risk group, PPC, PCV, and treatment related factors. On univariate analysis, MIBC was prognostic for all endpoints except OS; with greatest impact in those with Gleason scores of 8–10. However, on multivariate analysis, MIBC was only prognostic for FFBF (hazard ratio [HR] 1.9, p = 0.008), but not for FFM (p = 0.19), CSS (p = 0.16), and OS (p = 0.99).
In patients undergoing dose-escalated EBRT, MIBC had the greatest influence in those with Gleason scores of 8–10 but provided no additional prognostic data as compared to PPC and PCV, which remain the preferable prognostic variables in this patient population.
Prostate cancer; Biopsy; prognostic factors; Maximum involvement; Tumor in Core; Radiotherapy
Assessment of oxidative stress markers was perfomed in prostate cancer (PCa) patients subjected to high-dose brachytherapy (HDR) with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT). Sixty men with PCa were subjected to combined two-fraction treatment with HDR (tot. 20 Gy) and EBRT (46 Gy). Blood samples were taken before treatment, immediately afterwards, after 1.5–3 months, and approx. 2 years. Control group consisted of 30 healthy men. Erythrocyte glutathione peroxidase activity in the patients was lower than in healthy subjects by 34% (P < 0.001), 50% (P < 0.001), 30% (P < 0.05), and 61% (P < 0.001), respectively, at all periods. No significant differences were found by comparing superoxide dismutase and catalase activity in PCa patients with that of the controls. After 2 years of the end of treatment, the activity of studied enzymes demonstrated a decreasing tendency versus before therapy. Blood plasma thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) concentration was higher than in the controls at all periods, while erythrocyte TBARS decreased after 2 years to control levels. The results confirm that in the course of PCa, imbalance of oxidant-antioxidant processes occurs. The therapy did not alter the levels of oxidative stress markers, which may prove its applicability. Two years is too short a period to restore the oxidant-antioxidant balance.
To induce fast relief of dysphagia in patients with oesophageal cancer high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy was applied before external radiotherapy in a prospective study. Seventy-four patients with inoperable oesophageal cancer (36 squamous cell, 38 adenocarcinoma) were treated with a combination of 10 Gy HDR brachytherapy, followed by 40 Gy in 4 weeks external beam radiotherapy (EBRT), starting 2 weeks later. Tumour response, as measured by endoscopy and/or barium swallow, revealed complete remission in 21 and partial response in 38 patients (overall response rate 80%). Improvement of dysphagia was induced by brachytherapy within a few days in 39%, and achieved at the end of treatment in 70% of patients. Further weight loss was prevented in 39 of the 59 patients who presented with weight loss. Pain at presentation improved in 12 out of 25 patients. Median survival was 9 months. No differences in either response rate or survival were found in squamous cell or adenocarcinoma. Side-effects were either acute with minimal discomfort in 32 (42%) or late with painful ulceration in five patients (7%), occurring after a median of 4 months. A fistula developed in six patients, all with concurrent tumour. In conclusion, brachytherapy before EBRT was a safe and effective procedure to induce rapid relief of dysphagia, especially when combined with EBRT.
To examine the rates of long-term biochemical recurrence-free survival (BRFS) with respect to isotope in intermediate-risk prostate cancer treated with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) and brachytherapy.
A total of 242 consecutive patients with intermediate-risk prostate cancer were treated with iodine-125 (125I) or palladium-103 (103Pd) implants after EBRT (range 45.0–50.4 Gy) from 1996 to 2002. Of the 242 patients, 119 (49.2%) were treated with 125I and 123 (50.8%) with 103Pd. Multivariate Cox regression analysis was used to analyze BRFS, defined according to the Phoenix definition (prostate-specific antigen nadir plus 2 ng/mL) with respect to Gleason score, stage, pretreatment prostate-specific antigen level, and source selection. Late genitourinary/gastrointestinal toxicities were assessed using the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group/European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer scale.
At a median follow-up of 10 years, the BRFS rate was 77.3%. A statistically significant difference was found in the 10-year BRFS rate between the 125I- and 103Pd-treated groups (82.7% and 70.6%, respectively; P = .001). The addition of hormonal therapy did not improve the 10-year BRFS rate (77.6%) compared with RT alone (77.1%; P = .22). However, a statistically significant difference in the BRFS rate was found with the addition of hormonal therapy to 103Pd, improving the 10-year BRFS rate for (73.8%) compared with 103Pd alone (69.1%; P = .008). On multivariate analysis, isotope type (103Pd vs 125I), pretreatment prostate-specific antigen level > 10 ng/mL, and greater tumor stage increased the risk of recurrence by 2.6-fold (P = .007), 5.9-fold (P < .0001), and 1.7-fold (P = .14), respectively.
125I renders a superior rate of BRFS compared with 103Pd when used with EBRT. Hormonal therapy does not provide additional benefit in patients with intermediate-risk prostate cancer treated with a combination of EBRT and brachytherapy, except for the addition of hormonal therapy to 103Pd.
There is scant data regarding disease presentation and treatment response among black men living in Africa. In this study we evaluate disease presentation and early clinical outcomes among Ghanaian men with prostate cancer treated with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT).
A total of 379 men with prostate cancer were referred to the National Center for Radiotherapy, Ghana from 2003 to 2009. Data were collected regarding patient-and tumor-related factors such as age, prostate specific antigen (PSA), Gleason score (GS), clinical stage (T), and use of androgen deprivation therapy (ADT). For patients who received EBRT, freedom from biochemical failure (FFbF) was evaluated using the Kaplan-Meier method.
Of 379 patients referred for treatment 69.6% had initial PSA (iPSA) > 20 ng/ml, and median iPSA was 39.0 ng/ml. A total of 128 men, representing 33.8% of the overall cohort, were diagnosed with metastatic disease at time of referral. Among patients with at least 2 years of follow-up after EBRT treatment (n=52; median follow-up time: 38.9 months), 3- and 5-year actuarial FFbF was 73.8% and 65.1% respectively. There was significant association between higher iPSA and GS (8–10 vs. ≤7, p < 0.001), and T stage (T3/4 vs. T1/2, p < 0.001).
This is the largest series reporting on outcomes after prostate cancer treatment in West Africa. That one-third of patients presented with metastatic disease suggests potential need for earlier detection to permit curative-intent therapy. Data from this study will aid in the strategic development of prostate cancer research roadmap in Ghana.
African men; Prostate cancer; External beam RT; Biochemical failure
To estimate the rate of late grade 3 or greater genitourinary (GU) and gastrointestinal (GI) adverse events (AEs) following treatment with external beam radiation therapy and prostate high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy.
Methods and Materials
Each participating institution submitted CT based HDR brachytherapy dosimetry data electronically for credentialing and for each study patient. Patients with locally confined T1c-T3b prostate cancer were eligible for this study. All patients were treated with 45 Gy in 25 fractions from external beam radiotherapy and one HDR implant delivering 19 Gy in 2 fractions. All AEs were graded according to CTCAEv3.0. Late GU/ GI AEs were defined as those occurring more than nine months from the start of the protocol treatment, in patients with at least 18 months of potential follow-up.
A total of 129 patients from 14 institutions were enrolled in this study. 125 patients were eligible and AE data was available for 112 patients. The pretreatment characteristics of the patients were as follows: T1c-T2c 91%, T3a-T3b 9%, PSA ≤ 10 70%, PSA >10-≤20 30%, GS 2-6 10%, GS 7 72%, and GS 8-10 18%. At a median follow-up time of 29.6 months, 3 acute and 4 late grade 3 GU/GI AEs were reported. The estimated rate of late grade 3-5 GU and GI AE at 18 months was 2.56%.
This is the first prospective, multi-institutional trial of CT based HDR brachytherapy and external beam radiotherapy. The technique and doses used in this study resulted in acceptable levels of adverse events.
Prostate cancer; High Dose Rate; Brachytherapy; Prospective multi-institutional clinical trial
We assessed the effect of radical prostatectomy (RP) and external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) on distant metastases (DM) rates in patients with localized prostate cancer treated with RP or EBRT at a single specialized cancer center.
Patients and Methods
Patients with clinical stages T1c-T3b prostate cancer were treated with intensity-modulated EBRT (≥ 81 Gy) or RP. Both cohorts included patients treated with salvage radiotherapy or androgen-deprivation therapy for biochemical failure. Salvage therapy for patients with RP was delivered a median of 13 months after biochemical failure compared with 69 months for EBRT patients. DM was compared controlling for patient age, clinical stage, serum prostate-specific antigen level, biopsy Gleason score, and year of treatment.
The 8-year probability of freedom from metastatic progression was 97% for RP patients and 93% for EBRT patients. After adjustment for case mix, surgery was associated with a reduced risk of metastasis (hazard ratio, 0.35; 95% CI, 0.19 to 0.65; P < .001). Results were similar for prostate cancer–specific mortality (hazard ratio, 0.32; 95% CI, 0.13 to 0.80; P = .015). Rates of metastatic progression were similar for favorable-risk disease (1.9% difference in 8-year metastasis-free survival), somewhat reduced for intermediate-risk disease (3.3%), and more substantially reduced in unfavorable-risk disease (7.8% in 8-year metastatic progression).
Metastatic progression is infrequent in men with low-risk prostate cancer treated with either RP or EBRT. RP patients with higher-risk disease treated had a lower risk of metastatic progression and prostate cancer–specific death than EBRT patients. These results may be confounded by differences in the use and timing of salvage therapy.
High-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy as monotherapy is a comparatively new brachytherapy procedure for prostate cancer. In addition to the intrinsic advantages of brachytherapy, including radiation dose concentration to the tumor and rapid dose fall-off at the surrounding normal tissue, HDR brachytherapy can yield a more homogeneous and conformal dose distribution through image-based decisions for source dwell positions and by optimization of individual source dwell times. Indication can be extended even to T3a/b or a part of T4 tumors because the applicators can be positioned at the extracapsular lesion, into the seminal vesicles, and/or into the bladder, without any risk of source migration or dropping out. Unlike external beam radiotherapy, with HDR brachytherapy inter-/intra-fraction organ motion is not problematic. However, HDR monotherapy requires patients to stay in bed for 1–4 days during hospitalization, even though the actual overall treatment time is short. Recent findings that the α/β value for prostate cancer is less than that for the surrounding late-responding normal tissue has made hypofractionation attractive, and HDR monotherapy can maximize this advantage of hypofractionation. Research on HDR monotherapy is accelerating, with a growing number of publications reporting excellent preliminary clinical results due to the high ‘biologically effective dose (BED)’ of >200 Gy. Moreover, the findings obtained for HDR monotherapy as an early model of extreme hypofractionation tend to be applied to other radiotherapy techniques such as stereotactic radiotherapy. All these developments point to the emerging role of HDR brachytherapy as monotherapy for prostate cancer.
prostate cancer; high-dose-rate (HDR); brachytherapy; monotherapy; hypofractionation
To investigate whether pre-treatment endorectal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings can predict biochemical relapse in patients with clinically localized prostate cancer (PCa) treated with external-beam radiation therapy (EBRT).
Patients and Methods
Between January 2000 and January 2002, 224 patients (median age 69 years, range 45-82) with biopsy-proven PCa underwent endorectal MRI before high-dose (≥ 81 Gy) EBRT. The value of multiple clinical and MRI variables in predicting PSA relapse at 5 years was determined using univariate and multivariate stepwise Cox regression. Clinical variables included pre-treatment PSA, clinical T-stage, Gleason score, use of neoadjuvant hormonal therapy and radiation dose. MRI variables, derived from retrospective consensus readings by two radiologists, measured intraprostatic and extraprostatic tumor burden.
After median follow-up of 67 months, 37 patients (16.5%) developed PSA relapse. The significant predictors of PSA relapse in univariate analysis were pre-treatment PSA, clinical T-stage, and multiple MRI variables including MRI TN-stage score; extracapsular extension (ECE) status; number of sextants involved by ECE, all lesions, or index (dominant) lesion; apical involvement; and diameter and volume of index lesion. Pretreatment PSA and ECE status were the only significant independent predictors upon multivariate analysis (P< 0.05 for both). ECE status was associated with the highest hazard ratio of 3.04; 5-year PSA relapse rates were 7% for no ECE, 20% for unilateral ECE, and 48% for bilateral ECE.
MRI findings can be used to predict post-EBRT PSA relapse, with ECE status on MRI and pre-treatment PSA being significant independent predictors of this endpoint.
MR imaging; prostate cancer; external beam radiation therapy; biochemical recurrence; extracapsular extension
Prostate brachytherapy can be used as a monotherapy for low- and intermediate-risk patients or in combination with external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) as a form of dose escalation for selected intermediate- and high-risk patients. Prostate brachytherapy with either permanent implants (low dose rate [LDR]) or temporary implants (high dose rate [HDR]) is emerging as the most effective radiation treatment for prostate cancer. Several large Canadian brachytherapy programs were established in the mid- to late-1990s. Prostate brachytherapy is offered in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. We anticipate the need for brachytherapy services in Canada will significantly increase in the near future. In this review, we summarize brachytherapy programs across Canada, contemporary eligibility criteria for the procedure, toxicity and prostate-specific antigen recurrence free survival (PRFS), as published from Canadian institutions for both LDR and HDR brachytherapy.