Radiation Therapy for Very Elderly Patients Aged 80 Years and Older With Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Uterine Cervix

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Abstract

Objectives:

We carried out a retrospective review to determine the role played by radiation therapy in the treatment of very elderly patients with uterine cervical cancer.

Materials and Methods:

Thirty elderly patients aged 80 years and older with squamous cell carcinoma of the uterine cervix, at clinical stages IB-IVA, underwent radiation therapy. Of these 30 patients, 6 received external irradiation alone and 24 received external irradiation and intracavitary brachytherapy. A total median dose of 69.0 Gy (range, 45.6 to 75.4 Gy) was delivered to the cervical tumors. No patients underwent chemotherapy.

Results:

At a median follow-up time of 24 months, 7 patients had developed recurrences, including local recurrences in 3 and distant metastases in 5. The local control and distant metastasis-free rates were 88% and 79%, respectively, at 2 years. The disease-free, cause-specific, and overall survival rates were 69%, 77%, and 75%, respectively, at 2 years. Primary tumor size, T category, and clinical stage were found to be significant prognostic factors for distant metastasis. Age and primary tumor size were considered as being significant variables that affected survival. With the exception of a transient hematologic reaction, there were no therapy-related toxicities of grade ≥3.

Conclusions:

Radiation therapy was safe and effective regarding local control of uterine cervical cancer in elderly patients aged 80 years and older, and appeared to contribute to their prolonged survival. Curative radiation therapy should be considered as a viable treatment option, even in very elderly patients.

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