open access

Vol 6, No 2 (2001)
Original papers
Published online: 2001-01-01
Submitted: 2001-01-16
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Treatment of advanced lung cancer by external beam radiotherapy and high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy

Janusz Skowronek, Krystyna Adamska, Grzegorz Zwierzchowski, Szczepan Cofta, Krzysztof Świerkocki, Tomasz Piorunek, Witold Młynarczyk
DOI: 10.1016/S1507-1367(01)70466-X
·
Rep Pract Oncol Radiother 2001;6(2):99-105.

open access

Vol 6, No 2 (2001)
Original papers
Published online: 2001-01-01
Submitted: 2001-01-16

Abstract

Purpose

Brachytherapy is a highly valued and effective palliative treatment for lung cancer, especially as it reduces intensity of dyspnoea and other symptoms arising from tumours inside the respiratory tract. In some cases, due to the location of the lesion brachytherapy is a treatment of choice. However, its curative role is unclear. A combination treatment of brachytherapy and an external beam irradiaton may play a significant role when the mediastinal lymph nodes are involved.

The paper presents the results of treatment of advanced lung cancer patients by external beam irradiation and brachytherapy, and the role of this palliative treatment is discussed.

Material and methods

Between May 1999 and March 2000 at the Greatpoland Cancer Centre fifteen patients with advanced lung cancer were treated by HDR brachytherapy and palliative external beam irradiation using the method of hypofractionation. The patients’ age ranged between 39 to 80 years, mean: 54.3 years. The treatment consisted of external beam irradiation (total dose of 20–30 Gy), and a weekly high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy (three fractions of 7.5 or 10 Gy, at 1 cm from the source). In three cases the treatment was started with external irradiation, whereas in 12 cases the first stage was brachytherapy. During the patients’ clinical and endobronchial follow-up of 1, 3 and 6 months, local remission and regression of difficulties in breathing, cough, pain and haemoptysis were assessed.

Results

In all our patients subjective improvement (regression of all symptoms) was found on the first check-up following treatment. In one case complete remission of the tumour lasted for over 6 months, in 9 cases partial remission and in two cases progression were found. Severe complications due to the high total local dose were not observed.

Conclusions

Combined palliative treatment (intraluminal brachytherapy and external beam irradiation) in advanced lung cancer was an efficient method that led to regression of symptoms and improvement of well-being in many patients.

Abstract

Purpose

Brachytherapy is a highly valued and effective palliative treatment for lung cancer, especially as it reduces intensity of dyspnoea and other symptoms arising from tumours inside the respiratory tract. In some cases, due to the location of the lesion brachytherapy is a treatment of choice. However, its curative role is unclear. A combination treatment of brachytherapy and an external beam irradiaton may play a significant role when the mediastinal lymph nodes are involved.

The paper presents the results of treatment of advanced lung cancer patients by external beam irradiation and brachytherapy, and the role of this palliative treatment is discussed.

Material and methods

Between May 1999 and March 2000 at the Greatpoland Cancer Centre fifteen patients with advanced lung cancer were treated by HDR brachytherapy and palliative external beam irradiation using the method of hypofractionation. The patients’ age ranged between 39 to 80 years, mean: 54.3 years. The treatment consisted of external beam irradiation (total dose of 20–30 Gy), and a weekly high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy (three fractions of 7.5 or 10 Gy, at 1 cm from the source). In three cases the treatment was started with external irradiation, whereas in 12 cases the first stage was brachytherapy. During the patients’ clinical and endobronchial follow-up of 1, 3 and 6 months, local remission and regression of difficulties in breathing, cough, pain and haemoptysis were assessed.

Results

In all our patients subjective improvement (regression of all symptoms) was found on the first check-up following treatment. In one case complete remission of the tumour lasted for over 6 months, in 9 cases partial remission and in two cases progression were found. Severe complications due to the high total local dose were not observed.

Conclusions

Combined palliative treatment (intraluminal brachytherapy and external beam irradiation) in advanced lung cancer was an efficient method that led to regression of symptoms and improvement of well-being in many patients.

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Keywords

lung cancer; teletherapy; brachytherapy

About this article
Title

Treatment of advanced lung cancer by external beam radiotherapy and high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy

Journal

Reports of Practical Oncology and Radiotherapy

Issue

Vol 6, No 2 (2001)

Pages

99-105

Published online

2001-01-01

DOI

10.1016/S1507-1367(01)70466-X

Bibliographic record

Rep Pract Oncol Radiother 2001;6(2):99-105.

Keywords

lung cancer
teletherapy
brachytherapy

Authors

Janusz Skowronek
Krystyna Adamska
Grzegorz Zwierzchowski
Szczepan Cofta
Krzysztof Świerkocki
Tomasz Piorunek
Witold Młynarczyk

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