The annual meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology was held from Oct. 23 to 26 in San Antonio and attracted approximately 11,000 participants from around the world, including physicians, oncology nurses, radiation therapists, biologists, physicists, and other cancer researchers. The conference featured educational courses focusing on radiation, surgical, and medical oncology.
In a phase III randomized clinical trial, Tamim M. Niazi, M.D., of McGill University and Jewish General Hospital in Montreal, and colleagues found that in patients with high-risk prostate cancer, moderately hypofractionated radiation therapy combined with long-term androgen deprivation therapy is as effective as standard fractionated radiation therapy.
The authors assessed the role of standard fractionation versus moderately hypofractionated radiation therapy and long-term androgen deprivation therapy in high-risk prostate cancer. Patients were treated with radiation to the pelvic lymph nodes and the prostate plus or minus seminal vesicles and a boost either concomitantly (for the moderate hypofractionation arm) or sequentially (for the standard fractionation arm). The researchers found that moderately hypofractionated radiation therapy (68 Gy in 25 fractions) combined with long-term androgen deprivation therapy was as effective as standard fractionated radiation therapy (76 Gy in 38 fractions), with similar and clinically acceptable acute and delayed side effects.
“For high-risk prostate cancer patients considered for external beam radiation therapy and long-term androgen deprivation therapy, moderately hypofractionated radiation therapy and long-term androgen deprivation therapy should be considered a new standard of care,” Niazi said.
In a phase II clinical trial, Erin F. Gillespie, M.D., of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and colleagues found that radiation therapy for high-risk, asymptomatic bone metastases may reduce painful complications and hospitalizations in individuals with metastatic cancer.
The authors identified 78 individuals with a metastatic solid tumor malignancy and more than five metastatic lesions, including at least one asymptomatic high-risk bone lesion. The researchers found that skeletal-related events (e.g., fracture, cord compression, surgery for instability, or radiation for bone pain) were decreased with radiation (29 versus 1.6 percent). In addition, hospitalizations for skeletal-related events occurred less often with radiation (11 versus 0 percent). Furthermore, pain-related quality of life was better at one year with radiation than without, and the side effects of radiation were minimal (no grade 3 toxicities and only 10 percent of patients reported grade 2 toxicities).