ASTRO Annual Meeting
ASTRO Annual Meeting
October 02, 2011
1 min read

Adjuvant RT associated with improved disease site control

You've successfully added to your alerts. You will receive an email when new content is published.

Click Here to Manage Email Alerts

We were unable to process your request. Please try again later. If you continue to have this issue please contact

2011 ASTRO Annual Meeting

MIAMI - Adjuvant radiotherapy improved loco-regional failure control rates in patients with Merkel cell carcinoma, according to 20-year data from researchers at the Fox Chase Cancer Center.

From 1990 to 2010, 88 patients with Merkel cell carcinoma presented to the institution; the researchers retrospectively reviewed these patients for logo-regional (LR) failure, DFS and OS. The median age of patients was 72 years and median follow-up was 20 months.

Primary tumor locations included the head and neck (42%), upper extremity (25%), lower extremity (22%) and trunk (10%). Disease stage varied: stage I (35%), stage II (16%), stage III (43%) and stage IV (6%). Eighty-one percent of patients were available for assessment of adjuvant therapy; 79% received adjuvant radiotherapy (RT) with a median dose of 50 Gy.

LR failure occurred in 26 patients: 14 who received RT vs. 12 who did not receive RT. PFS rates were superior among patients who received RT vs. those who did not: 2-year PFS = 70%, 3-year PFS = 63% vs. 2-year PFS = 35%, 3-year PFS = 34% (P=.01). Disease stage among the 14 patients with LR failure who received RT is as follows: three patients with stage I, one patient with stage II, 10 patients with stage III. Disease stage among the 12 LR failures who did not receive RT is: two with stage I, three with stage II, six with stage III.

According to univariate analysis, the use of adjuvant RT improved the risk for LR failure (OR=0.256; 95% CI, 0.0073-0.904) and the age- and stage-adjusted risk for LR (OR=0.227; 95% CI, 0.053-0.967). In addition, RT was an independent predictor for improved LR control, according to the researchers (HR=0.057; 95% CI, 0.008-0.407).

For all patients, 2-year OS was 84% and 3-year OS was 72%; 2-year DFS was 76% and 3-year DFS was 60%.

"RT was an independent predictor of improved LR control after adjusting for disease stage, which suggests a LR control benefit regardless of patient stage at presentation," the researchers wrote. "Collaborative multi-institution efforts would further help identify patients who would best benefit from adjuvant RT."

For more information:

  • Murphy C. Abstract #2995. Presented at: 2011 ASTRO Annual Meeting; Oct. 2-6, 2011; Miami.

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.

Twitter Follow on Twitter.