1008P - Effect of protracted radiotherapy treatment on outcome of head and neck SCC patients (NEMROCK experience)

Date 09 October 2016
Event ESMO 2016 Congress
Session Poster display
Topics Head and Neck Cancers
Surgical Oncology
Radiation Oncology
Presenter Lina Ahmed
Citation Annals of Oncology (2016) 27 (6): 328-350. 10.1093/annonc/mdw376
Authors L. Ahmed1, H. Darwish2, S. El-Haddad2, T. El-Nahas2
  • 1Clinical Oncology, Kasr Al-Aini Ctr of Clin Oncology and Nuclear Medicine(NEMROCK), Cairo Univ, 11562 - Cairo/EG
  • 2Clinical Oncology, Kasr Al-Aini Ctr of Clin Oncology and Nuclear Medicine(NEMROCK), Cairo Univ, Cairo/EG



Patients with head and neck cancer receiving radiation therapy alone or with concurrent chemotherapy often develop mucositis that may lead to unplanned treatment interruptions, these decreases in treatment intensity may reduce rates of loco-regional tumor control and survival.


A total number of one hundred twenty head and neck cancer patients included in this retrospective study presented to NEMROCK between January 2005 and December 2010 after they underwent surgery and received their post operative adjuvant radiotherapy with or without concomitant chemotherapy. The impact of both overall treatment time of radiation and treatment gaps on loco regional tumor control and overall survival were studied.


Radiation treatment gaps lasting 5 days or less did not influence LC (86%) at 3-years, which may suggest that the average dose intensity (>9 Gy/week), appeared high enough to compensate for few days of treatment break meanwhile patients received low DI ( 10 days gap (87.8% vs. 61%, p = 0.001). An increased OTT (> 60 days) and low DI (9 Gy/week) are seem to be related to a decreased OAS among our patients in multivariate analysis.


In this retrospective study, patients with head-and-neck cancer, who have unplanned interruptions in radiotherapy have an increased risk of death and tumor recurrence. This analysis have several limitations. It is impossible to fully remove the effect of unmeasured factors that are associated both with presence of treatment interruptions and risk of death like mucositis, xerostomia, dysphagia, and aspiration, each of which may also be associated with decreased survival time. Thus, the observed increased risk of death associated with interruptions in radiotherapy may not be entirely attributable to the interruptions themselves.

Clinical trial identification

this is retrospective study and not a clinical trial

Legal entity responsible for the study

Kasr El-Aini Centre of Clinical Oncology & Nuclear Medicine (NEMROCK)


Kasr El-Aini Centre of Clinical Oncology & Nuclear Medicine (NEMROCK)


All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.