Accelerated partial breast irradiation is safe and effective using intensity-modulated radiation therapy in selected early-stage breast cancer

Alan A Lewin, Robert Derhagopian, Kunal Saigal, Joseph E Panoff, Andre Abitbol, D Jay Wieczorek, Vivek Mishra, Isildinha Reis, Annapoorna Ferrell, Lourdes Moreno, Cristiane Takita
International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics 2012 April 1, 82 (5): 2104-10

PURPOSE: To report the feasibility, toxicity, cosmesis, and efficacy of using intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) with respiratory gating to deliver accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) in selected Stage I/II breast cancer after breast-conserving surgery.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Eligible patients with node-negative Stage I/II breast cancer were prospectively enrolled in an institutional review board approved protocol to receive APBI using IMRT after breast-conserving surgery. The target volume was treated at 3.8 Gy/fraction twice daily for 5 days, to a total dose of 38 Gy.

RESULTS: Thirty-six patients were enrolled for a median follow-up time of 44.8 months. The median tumor size was 0.98 cm (range, 0.08-3 cm). The median clinical target volume (CTV) treated was 71.4 cc (range, 19-231 cc), with the mean dose to the CTV being 38.96 Gy. Acute toxicities included Grade 1 erythema in 44% of patients and Grade 2 in 6%, Grade 1 hyperpigmentation in 31% of patients and Grade 2 in 3%, and Grade 1 breast/chest wall tenderness in 14% of patients. No Grade 3/4 acute toxicities were observed. Grade 1 and 2 late toxicities as edema, fibrosis, and residual hyperpigmentation occurred in 14% and 11% of patients, respectively; Grade 3 telangiectasis was observed in 3% of patients. The overall cosmetic outcome was considered "excellent" or "good" by 94% of patients and 97% when rated by the physician, respectively. The local control rate was 97%; 1 patient died of a non-cancer-related cause.

CONCLUSIONS: APBI can be safely and effectively administered using IMRT. In retrospective analysis, IMRT enabled the achievement of normal tissue dose constraints as outlined by Radiation Therapy Oncology Group 04-13/NSABP B-13 while providing excellent conformality for the CTV. Local control and cosmesis have remained excellent at current follow-up, with acceptable rates of acute/late toxicities. Our data suggest that cosmesis is dependent on target volume size. Further prospective multi-institutional trials should be performed to evaluate IMRT to deliver APBI.

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