Cisplatin-based chemoradiotherapy is the standard treatment for patients with locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. However, patients with advanced age, renal, cardiac or neurogenic dysfunction seem ineligible for cisplatin treatment. We evaluated the safety and efficacy of concurrent carboplatin plus radiotherapy in patients ineligible for cisplatin usage.Methods
We retrospectively analyzed the records of 25 consecutive locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck patients who received concurrent carboplatin plus radiotherapy at Shizuoka Cancer Center between August 2006 and March 2014. Carboplatin was administered tri-weekly or weekly.Results
Patient characteristics were analyzed. The median age was 75 years (range, 54–82), male:female ratio, 24:1; performance status, 0–1 (23) or 2 (2); primary tumor site, oropharynx (10), hypopharynx (12), larynx (1) or oral cavity (2); Stage III (3), IVa (19) or IVb (3); induction chemotherapy, with (2) or without (23); and a median creatinine clearance of 62 ml/min (range, 37–117). The main reasons for choosing carboplatin were age (40%), renal impairment (36%) and cardiac dysfunction (20%). All patients received a planned irradiation dose of 70 Gy. Median follow-up was 30.9 months. Complete response was observed 70% patients. Median progression-free survival duration was 42.7 months. Median overall survival could not be analyzed. The 2-year progression-free and overall survival rates were 68 and 74%, respectively. The main toxicity Grade 3 or 4 was oral mucositis (56%), thrombocytopenia (34%), neutropenia (28%) and infection (24%).Conclusions
Concurrent carboplatin plus radiotherapy is tolerated and may be an option in treating locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck patients ineligible for treatment with cisplatin.