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Patients with Few Lung Metastases Get Faster Treatment with One SBRT Treatment


Research indicates patients who undergo a single 28-Gy session experience similar outcomes to those who have four 12-Gy sessions, pointing to safer, faster treatment.

Safe treatment for lung metastases can be effectively achieved faster than believed by using an ultrasound stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) method, according to newly presented research.

In a presentation during the American Society of Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual meeting, investigators from the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) revealed the results of their randomized Phase 2 trial. The study was conducted across 13 medical centers throughout New Zealand and Australia.

The study included 90 patients who had limited disease spread from one-to-three lung metastases. According to their results, patient who received on 28-Gy session with SBRT experienced the same results as patients who had four 12-Gy sessions each.

Ultimately, the research team, led by Sue Yom, Ph.D., professor of radiation oncology and otolaryngology-head and neck surgery at UCSF, focused on safety, and they assessed it by looking at the number of patient severe adverse rates.

They found both regimens were equally tolerable. For patients in the one-treatment group, the rate of grade 3+ events within a year post-treatment was 5 percent. It was 3 percent for patients in the four-treatment group. In addition, at a year post-treatment, disease-free survival rates were similar – 59 percent for one-treatment participants, and 60 percent for those receiving four treatments. Both groups also had similar local control rates – 93 percent and 95 percent, respectively.

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Ultimately, the researchers said, these types of shortened treatments bode well for radiation oncology, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. If further research produces similar findings, Yom said, it is possible that patients who have few lung metastases could be treated expeditiously and safely with only one treatment, potentially reducing hospital time and improving quality of life.

Support for this study came from the Trans-Taman Radiation Oncology Group.

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