Comparison of concurrent chemoradiotherapy versus neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by radiation in patients with advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma in endemic area: Experience of 128 consecutive cases with 5 year follow-up

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Abstract

Background: Combined radiotherapy and chemotherapy is considered the standard of care for locally advanced nasopharyngeal carcinoma (LA-NPC) in Epstein-Barr virus infection endemic area. This study compared the long-term outcomes between LA-NPC patients treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by radiotherapy (NACT) and those treated with concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CCRT). Methods: From 2003 to 2007, a total of 128 histopathologically proven LA-NPC patients receiving either NACT or CCRT were consecutively enrolled at the National Cheng Kung University Hospital in Taiwan. NACT consisted of 3-week cycles of mitomycin, epirubicin, and cisplatin on day 1 and fluorouracil and leucovorin on day 8 (MEPFL) or weekly alternated cisplatin on day 1 and fluorouracil and leucovorin on day 8 (P-FL). CCRT comprised 3-week cycles of cisplatin (Cis 100) or 4-week cycles of cisplatin and fluorouracil (PF4). The first failure site, disease free survival (DFS), overall survival (OS), and other prognostic factors were analyzed. Results: Thirty-eight patients (30%) received NACT. Median follow-up duration was 53 months. More patients with advanced nodal disease (N2-N3) (86.8% vs 67.8%, p =0.029) and advanced clinical stage (stage IVA-IVB) enrolled in the NACT group (55.2% vs 26.7%, p =0.002). For NACT, both MEPFL and P-FL had similar 5-year DFS and OS (52.9% vs 50%, p =0.860 and 73.5% vs 62.5%, p =0.342, respectively). For CCRT, both PF4 and Cis 100 had similar 5-year DFS and OS (62.8% vs 69.6%, p =0.49 and 72.9% vs 73.9%, p =0.72, respectively). Compared to CCRT, NACT had similar 5-year DFS and OS (51.5% vs 65.1%, p =0.28 and 71.7% vs 74.3%, p =0.91, respectively). Among patients who were recurrence-free in the first 2 years after treatment, those treated with NACT experienced poorer locoregional control compared to those treated with CCRT (Hazard ratio =2.57, 95% confidence interval: 1.02 to 6.47, p =0.046). Conclusions: For LA-NPC, both CCRT and NACT were similarly efficacious treatment strategies in terms of long-term disease control and survival probability. Close locoregional follow-up is recommended for patients receiving NACT, because these patients are more prone to develop locoregional failure than patients receiving CCRT.

Original languageEnglish
Article number787
JournalBMC cancer
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Genetics
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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