Cancer radiotherapie : journal de la Societe francaise de radiotherapie oncologique

[Tolerance and efficacy of preoperative radiation therapy for elderly patients treated for rectal cancer].

PMID 23643361


To retrospectively assess the impact of age on tolerance and oncologic outcomes treated by neoadjuvant treatment for patients of 70 years old or above with locally advanced rectal cancer. Ninety-one consecutive patients were divided into three groups: group 1 from 70 to 75 years (n=31); group 2: 76 to 79 years (n=31) and group 3, patients aged 80 years or above (n=29). Radiation therapy was delivered according two schemes: 25Gy in five fractions (short scheme) or 45 to 50Gy with a classical fractionation (long scheme). Long scheme patients received a concomitant chemotherapy with 5-fluoro-uracile alone or associated with oxaliplatin. The three groups were comparable for performance status, Charlson's score and T staging. Long scheme radiation therapy and chemotherapy were performed in 77.5, 74.5 and 48.3% of patients (P=0.03) and 77.4, 71 and 41.4% (P=0.006) in the groups 1, 2 and 3, respectively. All patients treated with the short scheme irradiation received the treatment without any acute toxicity. In the long scheme group, 65% of patients received the treatment on time and grade 3 or above toxicity was observed in 12% of patients who did not receive oxaliplatin and in 48% of patients who received oxaliplatin. The overall survival rate at 3 and 5 years was 66.9% and 60.8% in the group 1, 90.5% and 75.9% in the group 2 and 80.5% and 73.8% in the group 3 (P=0.15). Neoadjuvant treatment is feasible with encouraging survival rates for patients aged 70 years and older. Short scheme radiation therapy seems to be an interesting option in this population.