Prophylactic cranial irradiation in patients with small cell lung cancer. A retrospective study of recurrence, survival and morbidity.
ABSTRACT Prophylactic cerebral irradiation (PCI) is a standard treatment for all small cell lung cancer (SCLC) patients with response to chemotherapy. The aims of this study were: to evaluate patients undergoing PCI with regard to cerebral recurrence rate, site of recurrence, and overall survival (OS) and to investigate the influence of steroid dose on acute toxicity.
From 2007 to 2010 a total of 118 consecutive patients underwent PCI (25 Gray in 10 fractions). In total, 114/118 received full PCI dose, all 118 were included in the study. Data were analyzed retrospectively with regard to disease stage, treatment, date of PCI, steroid dose during PCI, toxicity, time to recurrence, site of recurrence and time of death. The median follow up time was 16.6 months (range 3-54 months).
Of the 118 patients undergoing PCI, 74 had limited disease (LD-SCLC) and 44 had extensive disease (ED-SCLC). The median age was 65 years (range 46-80 years). The median overall survival of all patients from the time of diagnosis was 16.0 months (CI 95% 13.0-19.0), in LD-SCLC it was 24.0 months (CI 95% 19.6-28.3), and in ED-SCLC it was 12.0 months (CI 95% 9.6-14.4). Twenty-one patients (17.8%) were diagnosed with cerebral recurrence. Five of these presented with metastatic disease within the limbic system. Of these five patients, four had miliary cerebral disease and one had non-oligometastatic disease. The time from PCI to cerebral recurrence ranged from 4 to 27 months. Prednisolone administration varied from 0 to 100 mg/day. Forty-eight patients were not treated with steroids, 64.6% of these patients reported acute toxicity. Of the 36 patients receiving 50 mg prednisolone, only 22.2% had side effects. The most common symptoms during PCI were nausea and headache.
Twenty-one patients out of 118 developed brain metastases after PCI: five of the twenty-one had metastases located in the limbic system. The study showed that prophylactic steroid use might reduce acute toxicity to PCI. Survival data and recurrence rates are comparable to other clinical studies.
- [show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Prophylactic cranial irradiation reduces the incidence of brain metastasis in patients with small-cell lung cancer. Whether this treatment, when given to patients in complete remission, improves survival is not known. We performed a meta-analysis to determine whether prophylactic cranial irradiation prolongs survival. We analyzed individual data on 987 patients with small-cell lung cancer in complete remission who took part in seven trials that compared prophylactic cranial irradiation with no prophylactic cranial irradiation. The main end point was survival. The relative risk of death in the treatment group as compared with the control group was 0.84 (95 percent confidence interval, 0.73 to 0.97; P= 0.01), which corresponds to a 5.4 percent increase in the rate of survival at three years (15.3 percent in the control group vs. 20.7 percent in the treatment group). Prophylactic cranial irradiation also increased the rate of disease-free survival (relative risk of recurrence or death, 0.75; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.65 to 0.86; P<0.001) and decreased the cumulative incidence of brain metastasis (relative risk, 0.46; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.38 to 0.57; P<0.001). Larger doses of radiation led to greater decreases in the risk of brain metastasis, according to an analysis of four total doses (8 Gy, 24 to 25 Gy, 30 Gy, and 36 to 40 Gy) (P for trend=0.02), but the effect on survival did not differ significantly according to the dose. We also identified a trend (P=0.01) toward a decrease in the risk of brain metastasis with earlier administration of cranial irradiation after the initiation of induction chemotherapy. Prophylactic cranial irradiation improves both overall survival and disease-free survival among patients with small-cell lung cancer in complete remission.New England Journal of Medicine 09/1999; 341(7):476-84. · 51.66 Impact Factor