Postoperative Irradiation for

This article has been archived.
Please use for reference only.

John Han-Chih Chang, MD
OncoLink Assistant Editor
Last Modified: November 1, 2001

Share article

Presenter: Christopher Willett, MD
Affiliation: Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA and Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

Postoperative systemic therapy is the standard of care for intermediate to advanced colon cancer. Radiation therapy (RT) has been utilized far less due to the technical considerations such as not being able to localize the target. In T4 disease, by definition, there has been invasion into adjacent structures, which are usually more "fixed" in location and more easily targeted. Hence, the authors investigated their long term experience with this patient population receiving postoperative RT.

Materials and Methods:

  • One hundred and fifty-two patients having undergone a resection of a colon cancer were irradiated to 50 Gy to the tumor bed with or without 5-Flurouracil chemotherapy.
  • A majority of the patients had no evidence of either gross or microscopic residual disease.
  • Seventy-nine patients who had N0 or one lymph node positive disease had 10 year local control of 88%. Relapse free survival was 58% at 10 years.
  • Even patients who had T4 tumors complicated by perforations or fistulas had a nearly similar local control and relapse free survival rate.
  • Those with gross residual disease were not well controlled, and relapse free survival was 19% at 10 years.
Clinical/Scientific Implications:
  1. In selected stage T4 colon cancers, postoperative RT may improve local control and relapse free survival.
  2. As with any retrospective review, patient selection biases may be a factor. However, the data presented in this series are compelling.
  3. Prospective trials should be pursued in the locally advanced colon cancer patients with established guidelines regarding systemic therapy, which has demonstrated its positive impact on this disease entity.

ASTRO coverage is sponsored, in part, by Varian Medical Systems, Inc.

Post-mastectomy irradiation tied to complications, implant loss in women who undergo IBR

Sep 21, 2010 - In breast cancer patients who undergo immediate breast reconstruction, post-mastectomy irradiation is linked to surgical complications and implant loss, but the risk of noninfectious postoperative complications isn't higher after mastectomy and immediate breast reconstruction in women who receive chemotherapy, according to two studies published in the September issue of the Archives of Surgery.

OncoLink Treatment Binder

Select the side effects and forms for your patient's treatment binder

Learn More

Blogs and Web Chats

OncoLink Blogs give our readers a chance to react to and comment on key cancer news topics and provides a forum for OncoLink Experts and readers to share opinions and learn from each other.

OncoLink OncoPilot

Facing a new cancer diagnosis or changing the course of your current treatment? Let our cancer nurses help you through!

Learn More