Hypofractionated Conformal Radiotherapy with Concurrent Full-Dose Gemcitabine Versus Standard Fractionation Radiotherapy with Concurrent Fluorouracil for Unresectable Pancreatic Cancer: a Multi-Institution Experience

Sunpreet Rakhra, Jonathan B. Strauss, John Robertson, Cornelius J. McGinn, Thomas Kim, Jiayi Huang, Andrew Blake, Irene Helenowski, John P. Hayes, Mary Mulcahy, William Small*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose/Objective(s): The purpose of this study was to compare oncologic outcomes and toxicity profile of hypofractionated conformal radiotherapy (RT) with concurrent full-dose gemcitabine versus standard fractionation RT with concurrent 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) in the treatment of unresectable non-metastatic pancreatic cancer. Materials/Methods: Patients with unresectable non-metastatic adenocarcinoma of the pancreas treated at three institutions were included. All patients were treated with chemoradiotherapy (CRT) consisting of either hypofractionated RT to the gross disease concurrent with a full-dose gemcitabine-based regimen versus standard fractionation RT to the tumor and elective nodes concurrent with 5-FU. End points included rates of gastrointestinal (GI) toxicities, overall survival (OS), and distant metastasis free survival (DMFS). Results: From January 1999 to December 2009, 170 patients were identified (118 RT/gemcitabine, 52 RT/5-FU). There were no differences in demographic or clinical factors. Acute GI toxicities (grades <3 versus ≥3) were 82.2 and 17.8 %, respectively, for patients treated with RT/gemcitabine and 78.9 and 21.2 % for those treated with RT/5-FU (p = 0.67). Late GI toxicities (grades <3 versus ≥3) were 88.1 and 11.9 %, respectively, for RT/gemcitabine and 80.8 and 19.2 % for RT/5-FU (p = 0.23). OS for RT/gemcitabine and RT/5-FU were 52 versus 36 % at 1 year and 14 versus 6 % at 2 years favoring the RT/gemcitabine group (p = 0.02). DMFS at 1 and 2 years for RT/gemcitabine were 41 and 11 % versus 24 and 4 % for RT/5-FU (p = 0.02). Conclusions: RT/gemcitabine was equivalent in toxicity to RT/5-FU but was associated with superior OS and DMFS. When RT is used in the treatment of unresectable pancreatic cancer, hypofractionated conformal RT with concurrent full-dose gemcitabine may be the preferred approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)196-201
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Gastrointestinal Cancer
Volume47
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016

Keywords

  • GEM/RT versus 5-FU/RT
  • Locally advanced pancreatic cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Gastroenterology

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