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Thermal Ablation Plus Radiation May Extend Lung Cancer

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NEW YORK MAR 30, 2006 (Reuters Health) - Image-guided radiofrequency ablation followed by conventional radiotherapy appears to be more effective for local control and survival in patients with inoperable stage 1 non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), researchers report.

"Our study supports the theory that image-guided thermal ablation and radiation are synergistic," lead investigator Dr. Damian E. Dupuy told Reuters Health. "This notion has far-reaching implications regarding future therapy for not only lung cancer but other solid tumors that are candidates for local therapy. We have seen this synergy in other locations as well and have shown it in animal tumor models."

Dr. Dupuy of Rhode Island Hospital, Providence and colleagues treated 24 patients with inoperable NSCLC with CT-guided radiofrequency ablation followed by radiotherapy. The findings appear in the March issue of Chest.

There were no treatment-related deaths or grade 3 or 4 toxicities. At a mean follow-up just over 2 years, 14 patients had died. The cumulative survival rate at 2 years was 50% and at 5 years, it was 39%.

Ten deaths were cancer-related. Three patients died of respiratory failure with no evidence of active disease and another died of a cerebrovascular accident.

Given these preliminary findings, the researchers just started a national multicenter trial in the hopes of improving survival in this group of patients."


Chest 2006;129:738-745.

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