1 August 2012
A combination of external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) and intracavitary brachytherapy (ICBT) is well established as the standard radical radiotherapy (RT) for cervical cancer. However, it is sometimes necessary to perform EBRT alone for patients where ICBT is not feasible. For these patients, we initiated EBRT alone with three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3DCRT). The purpose of this study is to evaluate the results of EBRT alone without ICBT for patients with cervical cancer. Sixteen patients were treated with EBRT alone between 2002 and 2009. There were three stage IIB, six stage IIIB and seven patients with stage IVA disease. A total of 10 patients were treated with a median dose of 66 Gy with a median overall treatment time (OTT) of 40 days delivered by a concomitant boost (CCB), and a median dose of 60 Gy with a median OTT of 47 days was administered for six patients by conventional fractionation (CF). The 3-year overall survival (OAS) and local control (LC) rates were 43.8% and 75.0%, respectively. The 3-year LC rate was 90.0% for the CCB group, 50.0% for the CF group ( P = 0.0692); 100% for OTT ≤42 days, 42.9% for OTT ≥43 days ( P = 0.0095). No severe acute and late adverse effects were encountered for any of the patients. These outcomes suggest that EBRT with a CCB program may be a promising radical treatment for cervical cancer that provides better LC with minimal complications, especially in cases where ICBT cannot be performed.