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Phase II Study of Accelerated High-Dose Radiotherapy With Concurrent Chemotherapy for Patients With Limited Small-Cell Lung Cancer: Radiation Therapy Oncology Group Protocol 0239

International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2012.01.075
  • Thoracic Cancer
  • Medicine


Purpose To investigate whether high-dose thoracic radiation given twice daily during cisplatin-etoposide chemotherapy for limited small-cell lung cancer (LSCLC) improves survival, acute esophagitis, and local control rates relative to findings from Intergroup trial 0096 (47%, 27%, and 64%). Patients and Methods Patients were accrued over a 3-year period from 22 US and Canadian institutions. Patients with LSCLC and good performance status were given thoracic radiation to 61.2 Gy over 5 weeks (daily 1.8-Gy fractions on days 1-22, then twice-daily 1.8-Gy fractions on days 23-33). Cisplatin (60 mg/m2 IV) was given on day 1 and etoposide (120 mg/m2 IV) on days 1-3 and days 22-24, followed by 2 cycles of cisplatin plus etoposide alone. Patients who achieved complete response were offered prophylactic cranial irradiation. Endpoints included overall and progression-free survival; severe esophagitis (Common Toxicity Criteria v 2.0) and treatment-related fatalities; response (Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors); and local control. Results Seventy-two patients were accrued from June 2003 through May 2006; 71 were evaluable (median age 63 years; 52% female; 58% Zubrod 0). Median survival time was 19 months; at 2 years, the overall survival rate was 36.6% (95% confidence interval [CI] 25.6%-47.7%), and progression-free survival 19.7% (95% CI 11.4%-29.6%). Thirteen patients (18%) experienced severe acute esophagitis, and 2 (3%) died of treatment-related causes; 41% achieved complete response, 39% partial response, 10% stable disease, and 6% progressive disease. The local control rate was 73%. Forty-three patients (61%) received prophylactic cranial irradiation. Conclusions The overall survival rate did not reach the projected goal; however, rates of esophagitis were lower, and local control higher, than projected. This treatment strategy is now one of three arms of a prospective trial of chemoradiation for LSCLC (Radiation Therapy Oncology Group 0538/Cancer and Leukemia Group B 30610).

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