This retrospective analysis aims to report results and variables from patients with cervix cancer treated by radiation therapy alone with telecobalt and low-dose-rate brachytherapy (LDRB).
Between September 1989 and September 1995, 190 patients with histologic diagnosis of cervix carcinoma were treated with telecobalt for external beam radiotherapy (EBR), followed by one or two insertions of LDRB. Stage distribution according to patients was the following: IB, 12; IIA, 4; IIB, 105; and IIIB, 69. Median dose of EBR at whole pelvis was 40 Gy, and median parametrial doses for Stages II and III patients were 50 Gy and 60 Gy, respectively. Median doses of LDRB at point A for patients treated with one and two insertions were 38 Gy and 50 Gy, respectively.
Median follow-up time was 70 months (range: 8-127 months). Overall survival, disease-free survival, and 5-year local control of patients at Stages I, II, and III were 83%, 78%, and 46%; 83%, 82%, and 49%; and 92%, 87%, and 58%, respectively. Overall incidence of late complications in the rectum, small bowel, and urinary tract was 15.3% (19/190), 4.2% (8/190), and 6.8% (13/190), respectively. The actuarial 5-year rectal, small bowel, and urinary incidence of late complications was 16.1%, 4.6%, and 7.6%, respectively. Clinical stage was the only significant variable for overall 5-year survival (p = 0.001), for disease-free survival (p = 0.001), and for local control (p = 0.001). Stage II patients more than 50 years old had better disease-free survival and local control at 5 years (p = 0.004). None of the analyzed variables influenced the actuarial 5-year incidence of late complications.
Results of this series suggest that the use of telecobalt equipment for EBR with doses up to 50 Gy at whole pelvis, prior to brachytherapy, is an acceptable technique for radiation therapy alone in the treatment of cervix cancer, especially in developing countries, including Brazil, where telecobalt machines still prevail.
International Journal of Radiation OncologyBiologyPhysics 04/2003; 55(3):695-706. DOI:10.1016/S0360-3016(02)03939-1 · 4.18 Impact Factor