AffiliationDepartment of Clinical Oncology, Christie Hospital, Oak Road, Withington, Manchester, UK.
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AbstractBACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Elderly patients with head and neck cancer may not be treated aggressively with radiotherapy, due to concerns regarding tolerance of treatment and toxicity. A retrospective study was undertaken of patients aged 80 years and over, treated by definitive radiotherapy for head and neck cancer. MATERIAL AND METHODS: 98 patients aged 80-92 received radiotherapy for carcinoma of the head and neck between 1991 and 1995. All patients received beam directed radiotherapy with radical intent using an immobilisation shell. RESULTS: Cancer specific survival was 59% and overall local control was 70% at 5 years. Both were significantly affected by T stage and site of disease. Cancer specific survival was comparable to that of patients aged below 80 years. Seven patients died within 6 months of the treatment. Three patients developed severe late toxicity. Metastatic disease occurred in eight patients. CONCLUSIONS: Radiotherapy is a beneficial and well tolerated treatment in elderly patients with carcinoma of the head and neck.
CitationRadiotherapy for head and neck cancer in elderly patients. 2003, 69 (1):37-42 Radiother Oncol
JournalRadiotherapy and Oncology
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