Radiotherapy is commonly used in induction regimens for patients with non–small cell lung cancer with operable mediastinal nodal disease, although evidence has not shown a benefit over induction chemotherapy alone. We compared outcomes between induction chemotherapy and induction chemoradiation using the National Cancer Data Base.Methods:
Induction radiation use and survival of patients who underwent lobectomy or pneumonectomy after induction chemotherapy for clinical T1-3N2M0 non–small cell lung cancer in the National Cancer Data Base from 2003 to 2006 were assessed using logistic regression, general linear regression, Kaplan–Meier, and Cox proportional hazard analysis.Results:
Of 1362 patients who met study criteria, 834 (61%) underwent induction chemoradiation and 528 (39%) underwent induction chemotherapy. Lobectomy was performed in 82% of patients (n = 1111), and pneumonectomy was performed in 18% of patients (n = 251). Pneumonectomy was performed more often after induction chemoradiation than after induction chemotherapy (20% vs 16%, P = .04). Downstaging from N2 to N0/N1 was more common with induction chemoradiation compared with induction chemotherapy (58% vs 46%, P < .01), but 5-year survival of patients receiving induction chemoradiation and patients receiving induction chemotherapy was similar in unadjusted analysis (41% vs 41%, P = .41). In multivariable analysis, the addition of radiation to induction chemotherapy also was not associated with a survival benefit (hazard ratio, 1.03; 95% confidence interval, 0.89-1.18; P = .73).Conclusions:
Induction chemoradiation is used in the majority of patients with non–small cell lung cancer with N2 disease who undergo induction therapy before surgical resection, but it is not associated with improved survival compared with induction chemotherapy.