• Collagen vascular diseases and enhanced radiotherapy-induced normal tissue effects--a case report and a review of published studies.

      Lee, C E; Prabhu, V; Slevin, Nicholas J; Department of Clinical Oncology, Christie Hospital, Manchester, UK. carolinelee@christie.nhs.co.uk (2011-03)
      Collagen vascular diseases (CVD) are a group of chronic, autoimmune conditions that can affect multiple organ systems. The mainstay of treatment involves the use of immunosuppressants. CVDs and immunosuppression increase the risk of these patients developing malignancy. The mechanisms through which these patients develop CVDs show similarities to those for radiotherapy late effects, especially fibrosis (via transforming growth factor β). Radiotherapy may in fact cause an active state to develop from a quiescent state of CVD, or exacerbate a pre-existing CVD. CVDs are said to be associated with increased normal tissue toxicity after radiotherapy. Here we present a case report of a patient with a long history of systemic lupus erythematosus and oropharyngeal carcinoma, treated with synchronous chemoradiotherapy. We also review published studies and formulate some guidance on the radiotherapy management of these patients.
    • Combined androgen deprivation therapy and radiation therapy for locally advanced prostate cancer: a randomised, phase 3 trial.

      Warde, P; Mason, M; Ding, K; Kirkbride, P; Brundage, M; Cowan, Richard A; Gospodarowicz, M; Sanders, K; Kostashuk, E; Swanson, G; et al. (2011-12-17)
      Whether the addition of radiation therapy (RT) improves overall survival in men with locally advanced prostate cancer managed with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is unclear. Our aim was to compare outcomes in such patients with locally advanced prostate cancer.
    • Current treatment approaches for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

      Illidge, Timothy M; Tolan, Shaun; School of Cancer Imaging Sciences, CR UK Paterson Institute for Cancer Research, University of Manchester, Manchester M20 4BX, UK. tmi@manchester.ac.uk (2008-04)
      There have been two major developments over the last decade that has led to improvements in outcome and longer survival for patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). These developments have been firstly to increase the dose of active cytotoxic drugs and shorten the time between cycles, resulting in dose-dense and/or dose-intense regimens and secondly the addition of the anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody rituximab to chemotherapy. Both strategies have been associated with higher response rates, lower relapse rates, longer event-free survival (EFS) and improved overall survival (OS), particularly in better prognostic groups. A combination of dose-dense and dose-intense chemotherapy regimens plus rituximab is currently being tested to confirm that the use of both approaches confers survival advantage. High-risk, poorer-prognosis DLBCL remains a challenge, and new treatment strategies are required for these patients. Improvements in outcome may potentially be achieved through a greater understanding of the genetic abnormalities specifically associated with poorer-prognosis disease, and factors that lead to unresponsiveness to chemotherapy. The role of radiotherapy is currently less clearly defined than at anytime in the management of DLBCL and the current evidence for using radiotherapy in this disease is therefore rigorously reviewed.
    • Endometrial adenocarcinoma: an analysis of treatment and outcome.

      Byrd, Louise M; Swindell, Ric; Webber-Rookes, Daniel; Hannon, Robert; Hunter, Robin D; Livsey, Jacqueline E; Davidson, Susan E; Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St Mary's Hospital for Women and Children, Manchester, UK. louise.byrd@cmmc.nhs.uk (2008-11)
      This study aims to review the survival and morbidity in patients treated for endometrial cancer, at a single centre and analyses the effects of co-morbidity on these outcomes. Case notes of all patients referred to the Christie Hospital with endometrial carcinoma from January 1, 1993 to December 31, 1995 (n=499) were reviewed. Twenty patients presented with recurrence and were not included in this analysis. Three hundred and seventy-five patients had previously undergone a total abdominal hysterectomy and bilateral salpingoophorectomy (+/- pelvic lymphadenectomy). Of these, 175 received adjuvant external beam radiotherapy (XRT) only, 49 received XRT and brachytherapy, 30 received brachytherapy alone and 121 patients had no further therapy. One hundred and four patients were referred for primary treatment. Radical radiotherapy was administered to 63 patients who were unfit for surgery, with 10 of these receiving XRT + brachytherapy and 53 receiving brachytherapy alone. Thirteen patients received palliative XRT and 28 supportive care only. The overall 5-year survival for those treated radically was 73.3%. There was no significant survival difference between patients who underwent surgery and adjuvant radiotherapy, in whatever form (p=0.115). Patients who did not undergo surgery did less well as a group, although there was no significant survival difference between those treated with combination therapy or brachytherapy alone (p=0.33). Survival was significantly associated with FIGO stage, tumour grade, age (especially those >75 years) and co-morbidity (ACE-27 score). Late morbidity occurred in 46 patients, with severe toxicity affecting 12 (3.8%). Toxicity was associated with ACE-27 score (p=0.0019), treatment dose and modality, with 50% (n=6) of severe toxicity seen in patients receiving adjuvant XRT + ICT. These data demonstrate that survival in patients with endometrial carcinoma treated radically remains good, with the stage and grade of tumour being significant factors for overall survival. The incidence of severe morbidity related to radiotherapy of any modality was 3.8%. A high co-morbidity (ACE-27) score was significantly associated with poorer survival (p<0.0055) and increased late treatment morbidity (p=0.0019).
    • The impact of radiotherapy late effects on quality of life in gynaecological cancer patients.

      Barker, Claire L; Routledge, Jacqueline A; Farnell, Damian J J; Swindell, Ric; Davidson, Susan E; Department of Clinical Oncology, the Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK. claire.barker@doctors.org.uk (2009-05-19)
      The aims of this study were to assess changes in quality of life (QoL) scores in relation to radical radiotherapy for gynaecological cancer (before and after treatment up to 3 years), and to identify the effect that late treatment effects have on QoL. This was a prospective study involving 225 gynaecological cancer patients. A QoL instrument (European Organisation for the Research and Treatment of Cancer QLQ-C30) and late treatment effect questionnaire (Late Effects Normal Tissues - Subjective Objective Management Analysis) were completed before and after treatment (immediately after radiotherapy, 6 weeks, 12, 24 and 36 months after treatment). Most patients had acute physical symptoms and impaired functioning immediately after treatment. Levels of fatigue and diarrhoea only returned to those at pre-treatment assessment after 6 weeks. Patients with high treatment toxicity scores had lower global QoL scores. In conclusion, treatment with radiotherapy for gynaecological cancer has a negative effect on QoL, most apparent immediately after treatment. Certain late treatment effects have a negative effect on QoL for at least 2 years after radiotherapy. These treatment effects are centred on symptoms relating to the rectum and bowel, for example, diarrhoea, tenesmus and urgency. Future research will identify specific symptoms resulting from late treatment toxicity that have the greatest effect on QoL; therefore allowing effective management plans to be developed to reduce these symptoms and improve QoL in gynaecological cancer patients.
    • Improving survival with thoracic radiotherapy in patients with small cell lung cancer. The CONVERT and the REST Trials.

      Faivre-Finn, Corinne; Blackhall, Fiona H; Snee, Michael; Harden, S; Hulse, Paul; Lorigan, Paul C (2010-09)
    • Management of unresectable stage III non-small-cell lung cancer with combined-modality therapy: a review of the current literature and recommendations for treatment.

      Bayman, Neil A; Blackhall, Fiona H; Jain, Pooja; Lee, Lip W; Thatcher, Nick; Faivre-Finn, Corinne; Department of Clinical Oncology, Christie Hospital, Manchester, UK. neil.bayman@christie.nhs.uk (2008-03)
      Lung cancer remains the most common cause of cancer deaths in the United Kingdom, and long-term survival from lung cancer has hardly improved over the past 30 years. The benefit of combined-modality therapy with chemotherapy and radiation therapy in improving survival for patients with inoperable non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) was discovered over 10 years ago. In this comprehensive literature review, we discuss the current status of combined-modality therapy for unresectable stage III NSCLC. The efficacy and toxicity of different chemoradiation therapy regimens are presented. The potential role of novel and targeted therapies and radiation dose escalation is also considered. Finally, recommendations are made for the treatment of unresectable stage III NSCLC.
    • Patterns of relapse following radiotherapy for differentiated thyroid cancer: implication for target volume delineation.

      Azrif, Muhammad; Slevin, Nicholas J; Sykes, Andrew J; Swindell, Ric; Yap, Beng K; Department of Clinical Oncology, Christie Hospital, Manchester, United Kingdom. (2008-10)
      INTRODUCTION: Post-operative residual disease in differentiated thyroid cancer is an indication for external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) especially if there is poor radioiodine uptake by the residual disease. There are no standardized guidelines or consensus in target delineation for radiotherapy in thyroid cancer. AIMS: To determine the pattern of recurrence in patients with well differentiated thyroid cancer who received adjuvant or definitive radiotherapy as well as radioiodine ablation following surgery or biopsy with a view to better defining future target volume delineation for radiotherapy. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Forty-nine patients with differentiated thyroid cancer received radical external beam radiotherapy and radioiodine ablation (3.5GBq) following thyroidectomy or biopsy between 1990 and 2000. Nineteen patients had macroscopic residual (11) or inoperable disease (8), whilst 30 patients had clear (5) or microscopic positive resection margin (24), and 1 patient the resection margin status was unknown. All the patients were deemed high risk for local recurrence or progressive disease. The thyroid bed and regional nodes were irradiated using two radiotherapy techniques: (1) non co-planar lateral fields (NCLF) in coronal plane using 6MV photons to a dose of 45-50Gy in 16 fractions over 22 days and (2) anterior-posterior parallel pair of 6MV photons to a dose of 40-42.5Gy in 16 fractions over 22 days. There was no attempt to irradiate the lymph nodes in that part of the anterior and posterior mediastinum extending from the brachiocephalic veins to the carina. RESULTS: The median follow-up was 5.4 years (range 0.9-12.4 years). The actuarial 5-year cause-specific survival and local control for the whole group was 75.7% and 81.4%, respectively. Of the 4 patients with mediastinal recurrence, all had neck recurrences and two had distant metastases. All the medisastinal recurrences occurred in superior mediastinum (level VII) and all were treated with NCLF in coronal plane radiotherapy technique. Furthermore, mediastinal recurrences did not occur in isolation. The 5-years loco-regional control rate was 89.1% for those with clear or microscopic positive margins and 69.2% for those with macroscopic residual or inoperable disease. Five-year cause specific survival was 58.3% for patients with macroscopic residual or inoperable disease and 91.4% for those with clear or microscopic positive margins. CONCLUSION: The status of postoperative margin relating to bulk of disease influences local control and cause specific survival. Surgical resection in locally advanced thyroid cancer should be performed by an experienced surgeon to achieve macroscopic clearance where possible. The majority of recurrences were loco-regional. The few superior mediastinal recurrences did not occur in isolation. All the mediastinal recurrences occurred in the superior mediastinum (level VII). We recommend the target volume should encompass the thyroid bed and regional neck nodes and the superior mediastinum level VII excluding the lymph nodes on both sides of the trachea within the anterior and posterior mediastinum extending from the brachiocephalic veins to the carina (compartment 4). Thus, this should facilitate dose escalation to improve loco-regional control and avoiding radiation induced mediastinal toxicity.
    • Primary Radiotherapy for Carcinoma of the Retromolar Trigone; A Useful Alternative to Surgery.

      Bayman, Neil A; Sykes, Andrew J; Bonington, Suzanne C; Blackburn, T; Patel, M; Swindell, Ric; Slevin, Nicholas J; Department of Clinical Oncology, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK. (2009-12-03)
      AIMS: Squamous cell carcinoma of the retromolar trigone is uncommon. The standard initial treatment is primary surgery, which usually involves microvascular reconstruction with a composite flap. Some patients are considered unsuitable for this procedure. This retrospective study examined the outcome and toxicity for patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the retromolar trigone treated with definitive radiotherapy in a single centre. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Between 1991 and 2000, 43 patients were treated with definitive radiotherapy with a median dose of 50Gy in 16 fractions over 21 days. Hospital case notes and radiotherapy records were analysed. RESULTS: The median age was 66 years (range 39-84 years). Nodal disease was evident in 13 (30.2%) patients. Twenty-one patients (51.2%) had stage I/II disease and 20 patients (48.8%) had stage III/IV disease. After a median follow-up of 59 months, 13 (30.2%) patients were alive and well, nine (20.9%) patients had died of an intercurrent illness and 21 (48.8%) had died of their disease. Five-year locoregional control was 46.5% (95% confidence interval 29.7-61.7), cause-specific survival was 45.7% (95% confidence interval 29.1-60.8) and overall survival was 30.9% (95% confidence interval 17.5-46.3). Osteoradionecrosis was documented in two patients. DISCUSSION: This hypofractionated regimen is convenient for this patient population and produced comparable outcomes to longer fractionation schedules without an increase in late toxicity.
    • Protocol for the combined immunosuppression & radiotherapy in thyroid eye disease (CIRTED) trial: A multi-centre, double-masked, factorial randomised controlled trial.

      Rajendram, Rathie; Lee, Richard W J; Potts, Mike J; Rose, Geoff E; Jain, Rajni; Olver, Jane M; Bremner, Fion; Hurel, Steven; Cook, Anne; Gattamaneni, Rao; et al. (2008)
      ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Medical management of thyroid eye disease remains controversial due to a paucity of high quality evidence on long-term treatment outcomes. Glucocorticoids are known to be effective initially but have significant side-effects with long-term use and recrudescence can occur on cessation. Current evidence is conflicting on the efficacy of radiotherapy and non-steroid systemic immunosuppression, and the majority of previous studies have been retrospective, uncontrolled, small or poorly designed.The Combined Immunosuppression and Radiotherapy in Thyroid Eye Disease (CIRTED) trial was designed to investigate the efficacy of radiotherapy and azathioprine in combination with a standard course of oral prednisolone in patients with active thyroid eye disease. METHODS/DESIGN: Patients with active thyroid eye disease will be randomised to receive (i) azathioprine or oral placebo and (ii) radiotherapy or sham-radiotherapy in this multi-centre, factorial randomised control trial. The primary outcome is improvement in disease severity (assessed using a composite binary measure) at 12 months and secondary end-points include quality of life scores and health economic measures. DISCUSSION: The CIRTED trial is the first study to evaluate the role of radiotherapy and azathioprine as part of a long-term, combination immunosuppressive treatment regime for Thyroid Eye Disease. It will provide evidence for the role of radiotherapy and prolonged immunosuppression in the management of this condition, as well as pilot data on their use in combination. We have paid particular attention in the trial design to establishing (a) robust placebo controls and masking protocols which are effective and safe for both radiotherapy and the systemic administration of an antiproliferative drug; (b) constructing effective inclusion and exclusion criteria to select for active disease; and (c) selecting pragmatic outcome measures. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Current controlled trials ISRCTN22471573.
    • Radiotherapy for small-cell lung cancer-Where are we heading?

      Bayman, Neil A; Sheikh, Hamid Y; Kularatne, B; Lorigan, Paul C; Blackhall, Fiona H; Thatcher, Nick; Faivre-Finn, Corinne; Department of Clinical Oncology, Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Wilmslow Road, Withington, Manchester M20 4BX, UK. (2009-03)
      Radiotherapy has an established role in the management of limited-disease small-cell lung cancer. However, essential questions related to the optimisation of thoracic radiotherapy remain unanswered including (i) optimal total dose, (ii) fractionation, (iii) timing and sequencing of radiation, (iv) volume of irradiation, and (v) concurrent chemotherapy combinations. The role of thoracic radiotherapy for extensive-disease small-cell lung cancer is more poorly understood but evidence suggests radiotherapy may have an important role in this setting. This review highlights the need for well-designed multi-national trials aimed at the optimisation and standardisation of radiotherapy for SCLC.
    • A systematic review of honey uses and its potential value within oncology care.

      Bardy, Joy; Slevin, Nicholas J; Mais, Kathleen L; Molassiotis, Alexander; School of Nursing, Social Work and Midwifery, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK. (2008-10)
      AIM: To synthesise the evidence regarding honey's role in health care and to identify whether this evidence applies more specifically to cancer care. DESIGN: Systematic review. METHODS: The inclusion and exclusion criteria were agreed by two reviewers and a keyword strategy was developed. EMBASE, CINAHL, AMED, MEDLINE, COCHRANE and PUBMED databases were screened to identify suitable articles. The citation list from each included study was also screened for potentially suitable papers. The key findings from each study were entered onto a data extraction sheet. RESULTS: In total, 43 studies were included in the systematic review, which included studies in relation to wounds (n = 19), burns (n = 11), skin (n = 3), cancer (n = 5) and others (n = 5). In addition, a systematic review regarding honey use in wound care was also included. While the majority of studies noted the efficacy of honey in clinical use, five studies found honey to be equally as effective as the comparator and three found honey to be less effective than the comparator treatment. Other research did not illustrate any significant difference between standard treatment regimes vs. honey treatment. Studies were generally poor in quality because of small sample sizes, lack of randomisation and absence of blinding. CONCLUSIONS: Honey was found to be a suitable alternative for wound healing, burns and various skin conditions and to potentially have a role within cancer care. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: In the cancer setting, honey may be used for radiation-induced mucositis, radiotherapy-induced skin reactions, hand and foot skin reactions in chemotherapy patients and for oral cavity and external surgical wounds.
    • The UK national breast cancer screening programme for survivors of Hodgkin lymphoma detects breast cancer at an early stage.

      Howell, Sacha J; Searle, C; Goode, Valerie; Gardener, T; Linton, Kim M; Cowan, Richard A; Harris, Maggie A; Hopwood, Penelope; Swindell, Ric; Norman, Alison; et al. (2009-08-18)
      BACKGROUND: Supradiaphragmatic radiotherapy (SRT) to treat Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL) at a young age increases the risk of breast cancer (BC). A national notification risk assessment and screening programme (NRASP) for women who were treated with SRT before the age of 36 years was instituted in the United Kingdom in 2003. In this study, we report the implementation and screening results from the largest English Cancer Network. METHODS: A total of 417 eligible women were identified through cancer registry/hospital databases and from follow-up (FU) clinics. Screening results were collated retrospectively, and registry searches were used to capture BC cases. RESULTS: Of the 417 women invited for clinical review, 243 (58%) attended. Of these 417 women, 23 (5.5%) have been diagnosed with BC, a standardised incidence ratio of 2.9 compared with the age-matched general population. Of five invasive BCs diagnosed within the NRASP, none involved axillary lymph nodes compared with 7 of 13 (54%) diagnosed outside the programme (P<0.10). The mean latency for BC cases was 19.5+/-8.35 years and the mean FU duration for those unaffected by BC was 14.6+/-9.11 years (P<0.01), suggesting that those unaffected by BC remain at high risk. Recall and negative biopsy rates were acceptable (10.5 and 0.8%, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: The NRASP appears to detect BC at an early stage with acceptable biopsy rates, although numbers are small. Determination of NRASP results on a national basis is required for the accurate evaluation of screening efficacy in women previously treated with SRT.
    • Ultrasound Imaging to Assess Inter- and Intra-fraction Motion during Bladder Radiotherapy and its Potential as a Verification Tool.

      McBain, Catherine A; Green, M M; Stratford, Julia; Davies, Julie; McCarthy, Claire; Taylor, Benjamin; McHugh, D; Swindell, Ric; Khoo, Vincent S; Price, Patricia M; et al. (2009-06)
      AIMS: Organ motion is the principle source of error in bladder cancer radiotherapy. The aim of this study was to evaluate ultrasound bladder volume measurement as a surrogate measure of organ motion during radiotherapy: (1) to assess inter- and intra-fraction bladder variation and (2) as a potential treatment verification tool. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty patients receiving radical radiotherapy for bladder cancer underwent post-void ultrasound bladder volume measurement at the time of radiotherapy treatment planning (RTP), and immediately before (post-void) and after receiving daily fractions. RESULTS: Ultrasound bladder volume measurement was found to be a simple and acceptable method to estimate relative bladder volume changes. Six patients showed significant changes to post-void bladder volume over the treatment course (P<0.05). The mean inter-fraction post-void bladder volume of five patients exceeded their RTP ultrasound bladder volume by more than 50%. Intra-fraction bladder volume increased on 275/308 (89%) assessed fractions, with the mean intra-fraction volume increases of seven patients exceeding their RTP ultrasound bladder volume by more than 50%. CONCLUSIONS: Both day-to-day bladder volume variation and bladder filling during treatment should be considered in RTP and delivery. Ultrasound may provide a practical daily verification tool by: supporting volume limitation as a method of treatment margin reduction; allowing detection of patients who may require interventions to promote bladder reproducibility; and identifying patients with prominent volume changes for the selective application of more advanced adaptive/image-guided radiotherapy techniques.