Cardiac and lung complication probabilities after breast cancer irradiation

Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdamo, North Holland, Netherlands
Radiotherapy and Oncology (Impact Factor: 4.36). 05/2000; 55(2):145-51. DOI: 10.1016/S0167-8140(00)00152-3
Source: PubMed


To assess for locoregional irradiation of breast cancer patients, the dependence of cardiac (cardiac mortality) and lung (radiation pneumonitis) complications on treatment technique and individual patient anatomy.
Three-dimensional treatment planning was performed for 30 patients with left-sided breast cancer and various breast sizes. Two locoregional techniques (Techniques A and B) and a tangential field technique, including only the breast in the target volume, were planned and evaluated for each patient. In both locoregional techniques tangential photon fields were used to irradiate the breast. The internal mammary (IM)-medial supraclavicular (MS) lymph nodes were treated with an anterior mixed electron/photon field (Technique A) or with an obliquely incident mixed electron/photon IM field and an anterior electron/photon MS field (Technique B). The optimal IM and MS electron field dimensions and energies were chosen on the basis of the IM-MS lymph node target volume as delineated on CT-slices. The position of the tangential fields was adapted to match the IM-MS fields. Dose-volume histograms (DVHs) and normal tissue complication probabilities (NTCPs) for the heart and lung were compared for the three techniques. In the beam's eye view of the medial tangential fields the maximum distance of the heart contour to the posterior field border was measured; this value was scored as the Maximum Heart Distance.
The lymph node target volume receiving more than 85% of the prescribed dose was on average 99% for both locoregional irradiation techniques. The breast PTV receiving more than 95% of the prescribed dose was generally smaller using Technique A (mean: 90%, range: 69-99%) than using Technique B (mean: 98%, range: 82-100%) or for the tangential field technique (mean: 98%, range: 91-100%). NTCP values for excess cardiac mortality due to acute myocardial ischemia varied considerably between patients, with minimum and maximum values of 0.1 and 7.5% (Technique A), 0.1 and 5.8% (Technique B) and 0.0 and 6.1% (tangential tech.). The NTCP values were on average significantly higher (P<0.001) by 1.7% (Technique A) and 1.0% (Technique B) when locoregional breast irradiation was given, compared with irradiation of the left breast only. The NTCP values for the tangential field technique could be estimated using the Maximum Heart Distance. NTCP values for radiation pneumonitis were very low for all techniques; between 0.0 and 1.0%.
Technique B results in a good coverage of the breast and locoregional lymph nodes, while Technique A sometimes results in an underdosage of part of the target volume. Both techniques result in a higher probability of heart complications compared with tangential irradiation of the breast only. Irradiation toxicity for the lung is low in all techniques. The Maximum Heart Distance is a simple and useful parameter to estimate the NTCP values for cardiac mortality for tangential breast irradiation.

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    • "The use of higher radiation doses and the irradiation of larger lung volumes in combination with chronic lung diseases results more likely in clinically relevant pneumonitis [11, 18]. In approximately 25–30 % of lung cancer patients, mild to severe RP can be observed following definitive radiotherapy with 60– 70 Gray (Gy) [11, 13, 15]. The clinical symptoms of RP include dyspnea, nonproductive cough, pleuritic chest pain, fever and, rarely, acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS; [5, 6, 27]). "
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    ABSTRACT: To assess efficacy of our single-centre experience with inhalative steroids (IS) in lung cancer patients with symptomatic radiation pneumonitis (RP) grade II. Material and methods Between 05/09 and 07/10, 24 patients (female, n = 8; male, n = 16) with lung cancer (non-small cell lung carcinoma [NSCLC]: n = 19; small cell lung cancer [SCLC]: n = 3; unknown histology: n = 2) and good performance status (ECOG ≤1) received definitive radiotherapy to the primary tumour site and involved lymph nodes with concurrent chemotherapy (n = 18), sequential chemotherapy (n = 2) or radiation only (n = 4) and developed symptomatic RP grade II during follow-up. No patient presented with oxygen requiring RP grade III. The mean age at diagnosis was 66 years (range: 50–82 years). Nine patients suffered from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) before treatment, and 18 patients had a smoking history (median pack years: 48). The mean lung dose was 15.5 Gy (range: 3.0–23.1 Gy). All patients were treated with IS. If a patient’s clinical symptoms did not significantly improve within two weeks of IS therapy initiation, their treatment was switched to oral prednisolone. All 24 patients were initially treated with a high dose IS (budesonide 800 μg 1-0-1) for 14 days. Of the patients, 18 showed a significant improvement of clinical symptoms and 6 patients did not show significant improvement of clinical symptoms and were classified as non-responders to IS. Their treatment was switched to oral steroids after two weeks (starting with oral prednisolone, 0.5 mg/kg bodyweight; at least 50 mg per day). All of these patients responded to the prednisolone. None of non-responders presented with increased symptoms of RP and required oxygen and / or hospitalization (RP grade III). The median follow-up after IS treatment initiation was 18 months (range: 4–66 months). The median duration of IS treatment and prednisolone treatment was 8.2 months (range: 3.0–48.3 months) and 11.4 months (range: 5.0–44.0 months), respectively. Of the 18 IS treatment responders, 2 (11.1 %) patients with pre-existing grade 2 COPD still required IS (400 μg twice a day) 45.0 and 48.3 months after radiotherapy, respectively. For the remaining 16 responders (88.9 %), IS therapy was stopped after 7.7 months (range: 3.0–18.2 months). None of the patients treated with IS developed any specific IS-related side effects such as oral candidiasis. This single-centre experience shows that high-dose IS is an individual treatment option for radiation-induced pneumonitis grade II in patients with a good performance status.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2016 · Radiation Oncology
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    • "Adjuvant radiation therapy after breast-conserving surgery is an essential treatment for early breast cancer [1]. Previous studies, however, have reported increased risk of radiation related toxicity resulting in non-breast cancer related deaths, which are mainly caused by cardiovascular disease and lung cancer [2,3,4]. Recently published study has reported that the cardiac mortality ratio for left sided (vs. "
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose To quantify the cardiac dose reduction during breathing adapted radiotherapy using Real-time Position Management (RPM) system in the treatment of left-sided breast cancer. Materials and Methods Twenty-two patients with left-sided breast cancer underwent CT scans during breathing maneuvers including free breathing (FB), deep inspiration breath-hold (DIBH), and end inspiration breath-hold (EIBH). The RPM system was used to monitor respiratory motion, and the in-house self respiration monitoring (SRM) system was used for visual feedback. For each scan, treatment plans were generated and dosimetric parameters from DIBH and EIBH plans were compared to those of FB plans. Results All patients completed CT scans with different breathing maneuvers. When compared with FB plans, DIBH plans demonstrated significant reductions in irradiated heart volume and the heart V25, with the relative reduction of 71% and 70%, respectively (p < 0.001). EIBH plans also resulted in significantly smaller irradiated heart volume and lower heart V25 than FB plans, with the relative reduction of 39% and 37%, respectively (p = 0.002). Despite of significant expansion of lung volume using inspiration breath-hold, there were no significant differences in left lung V25 among the three plans. Conclusion In comparison with FB, both DIBH and EIBH plans demonstrated a significant reduction of radiation dose to the heart. In the training course, SRM system was useful and effective in terms of positional reproducibility and patient compliance.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2014
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    • "The development of RP depends on the treatment-related factors [22,23], such as radiation dose, fractionation schedule, volume and region of lung irradiated, use of concurrent chemotherapy, and patient-related factors [6,9], such as pre-existing lung disease, poor pulmonary function, being a smoker, and genetic predisposition. It has been previously reported that radiation-induced lung sequelae affect as many as 9% of patients with breast cancer being treated with RT [24]. However, using computer-based radiation treatment planning systems dramatically decreased the incidence of these lung sequelae [25,26]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the correlation between the conventional plan parameters and dosimetric parameters obtained from conformal radiotherapy (RT) planning, and between these parameters and radiation pneumontitis (RP) incidence. Clinical and dosimetric data of 122 patients that were treated with mastectomy and adjuvant 3D conformal RT (39% received 2-field RT [2-FRT], and in addition, 61% received 4-field RT [4-FRT]) were retrospectively analyzed. Central lung depth (CLD), maximum lung depth (MLD), and lung length were measured by the conventional plan. Lung dose-volume histograms (DVH) were created with conformal planning, and the lung volumes receiving 5 to 50 Gy (V(5Gy) to V(50Gy)) were calculated. Minimum (D(min)), maximum (D(max)), and mean doses (D(mean)) for the ipsilateral lung and bilateral lungs were measured by DVH. Correlations between 3D dosimetric data and 2D radiographic parameters were analyzed. The conventional plan parameters did not significantly differ between 2-FRT and 4-FRT. The conformal plan D(min), D(max), and D(mean) values were higher in 4-FRT versus 2-FRT. CLD and MLD were correlated with DVH parameter V(5Gy) to V(45Gy) values for ipsilateral, as well as bilateral lungs for 2-FRT. MLD and ipsilateral D(mean) via 2-FRT planning had the strongest positive correlation (r=0.76, p<0.01). Moderate correlations existed between CLD and ipsilateral and bilateral lung V(5Gy-45Gy), and between MLD and bilateral lung V(5Gy-45Gy) values in 2-FRT. Only four patients developed symptomatic RP, 4 with 4-FRT and one with 2-FRT. The conformal plan parameters were strongly correlated with dose-volume parameters for breast 2-FRT. With only 4 cases of Grade 3 RP observed, our study is limited in its ability to provide definitive guidance, however assuming that CLD is an indicator for RP, V(20Gy) could be used as a predictor for RP and for 2-FRT. A well-defined parameters are still required to predict RP in 4-FRT.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2012
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