According to Scandinavian researchers, stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) is associated with a local control rate of 90% in patients with stage I non—small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who are deemed medically inoperable. “The results of the multicenter trial, which was conducted in Sweden, Denmark, and Norway, are extremely important,” said lead author Pia Baumann, MD, of the Department of Oncology and Radiotherapy, Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden. “The impact of this study, where the results were excellent regarding local and regional control, and promising regarding survival, will be that more centers will give SBRT as a standard treatment for patients with stage I NSCLC and have a better chance of curing them.”
Of the 57 patients with NSCLC in the study, 70% had T1 tumors and 30% had T2 tumors. Rates of overall survival at 1, 2, and 3 years were 86%, 65%, and 60%, respectively; the 1-, 2-, and 3-year figures for cancer-specific survival were 93%, 88%, and 88%.
“The standard treatment for lung cancer today is surgery, if it is possible, with the addition of chemotherapy,” said Baumann. “I believe that SBRT should be looked at as an option to combine an ablative method in combination with chemotherapy or conventional fractioned radiotherapy in the attempt to give this patient group prolonged survival.”