Adjuvant stereotactic body radiotherapy±cetuximab following salvage surgery in previously irradiated head and neck cancer

John A Vargo, Gregory J Kubicek, Robert L Ferris, Umamaheswar Duvvuri, Jonas T Johnson, James Ohr, David A Clump, Steven Burton, Dwight E Heron
Laryngoscope 2014, 124 (7): 1579-84

OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: Locoregional recurrence remains the primary failure pattern following salvage surgery for previously irradiated head and neck cancer; randomized trials have suggested a complimentary role for adjuvant chemotherapy and conventional reirradiation at the expense of significant increases in toxicity. We aimed to identify if stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) ± cetuximab improves tumor control while reducing treatment-related toxicity following salvage surgery.

STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective review (2005-2011) of 28 patients with high-risk features (positive surgical margins or extranodal extension) following macroscopic complete (R0/R1) salvage surgery treated with adjuvant SBRT±cetuximab.

METHODS: SBRT consisted of 40 to 44 Gy in five fractions over 1 to 2 weeks with concurrent cetuximab (n=7) administered at 400 mg/m2 day -7+250 mg/m2 days 0 and +8. Toxicity was physician recorded, and University of Washington Quality of Life Revised surveys were prospectively collected.

RESULTS: All patients received prior radiotherapy (median, 70 Gy; range, 54-99 Gy) with a median reirradiation interval of 25 months (range, 6-156 months). At a median follow-up of 14 months (range, 2-69 months), the 1-year locoregional control, distant control, disease-free survival, and overall survival were 51%, 90%, 49%, and 64%, respectively. Rates of acute and late severe (≥grade 3) toxicity were low at 0% and 8%, respectively. At a median follow-up survey time of 6 months, 56% of patients reported improved/stable overall quality-of-life scores.

CONCLUSIONS: Adjuvant SBRT±cetuximab following salvage surgery is well tolerated with acceptable oncologic outcomes and little toxicity. Future prospective trials should evaluate adjuvant SBRT±cetuximab versus a wait-and-see approach for recurrent head and neck cancers with high-risk features following salvage surgery.


Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"