Toxicity Analysis of RTOG 0236 Using Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy to Treat Medically Inoperable Early Stage Lung Cancer Patients

Carolyn Vachani, RN, MSN, AOCN
Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Last Modified: November 5, 2007

Scientific Session: Toxicity Analysis of RTOG 0236 Using Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy to Treat Medically Inoperable Early Stage Lung Cancer Patients

Stage I non-small cell lung cancer is optimally treated with surgery, but some patients may not be candidates for surgery due to health issues. Stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT) is a very precise form of radiation therapy that has been used to treat inoperable, early stage lung cancers. This presentation describes the toxicities seen in a group of inoperable patients with early stage lung cancer.

Patients had T1-2 disease with no lymph node involvement or distant metastases. 55 patients participated, 44 with T1 tumors and 11 with T2 tumors. With one year follow up; there had been no deaths. Treatment was well-tolerated, and side effects included skin reactions, rib fractures, and changes in pulmonary function tests.

This therapy appears to be a safe and well-tolerated option for inoperable patients with early stage lung cancer. Continued toxicity follow-up is needed as previous studies have shown that late toxicities can occur with SRT as far as 10-20 years out.

Partially funded by an unrestricted educational grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb.

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