Disease control and ototoxicity using intensity-modulated radiation therapy tumor-bed boost for medulloblastoma

William R. Polkinghorn, Ira J. Dunkel, Mark M. Souweidane, Yasmin Khakoo, David C. Lyden, Stephen W. Gilheeney, Oren J. Becher, Amy S. Budnick, Suzanne L. Wolden*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Purpose: We previously reported excellent local control for treating medulloblastoma with a limited boost to the tumor bed. In order to decrease ototoxicity, we subsequently implemented a tumor-bed boost using intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), the clinical results of which we report here. Patients and Methods: A total of 33 patients with newly diagnosed medulloblastoma, 25 with standard risk, and 8 with high risk, were treated on an IMRT tumor-bed boost following craniospinal irradiation (CSI). Six standard-risk patients were treated with an institutional protocol with 18 Gy CSI in conjunction with intrathecal iodine-131-labeled monoclonal antibody. The majority of patients received concurrent vincristine and standard adjuvant chemotherapy. Pure-tone audiograms were graded according to National Cancer Institute Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events version 3.0. Results: Median age was 9 years old (range, 4-46 years old). Median follow-up was 63 months. Kaplan-Meier estimates of progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) rates for standard-risk patients who received 23.4 or 36 Gy CSI (not including those who received 18 Gy CSI with radioimmunotherapy) were 81.4% and 88.4%, respectively, at 5 years; 5-year PFS and OS rates for high-risk patients were both 87.5%. There were no isolated posterior fossa failures outside of the boost volume. Posttreatment audiograms were available for 31 patients, of whom 6%, at a median follow-up of 19 months, had developed Grade 3 hearing loss. Conclusion: An IMRT tumor-bed boost results in excellent local control while delivering a low mean dose to the cochlea, resulting in a low rate of ototoxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e15-e20
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 1 2011


  • IMRT
  • Medulloblastoma
  • Ototoxicity
  • Tumor-bed boost

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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