Head Neck 2013 Dec 6;35(12):1796-800. Epub 2013 Mar 6.
Head and Neck Oncology Program, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida.
Background: Over the past decade, intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) has gained widespread use in the treatment of head and neck cancer.
Methods: All patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the oropharynx treated with primary IMRT with or without chemotherapy over a 5-year period were reviewed. Outcomes and morbidity were analyzed and compared with previously published data.
Results: In all, 170 patients were included in the analysis. The 3-year local control, locoregional control, disease-free survival, and overall survival rates were 92%, 91%, 80%, and 87%, respectively. Feeding tubes were present in 55% of patients during treatment, but remained in only 1% 2 years following treatment.
Conclusions: This study confirms that IMRT yields excellent treatment outcomes for oropharyngeal carcinoma. Although acute toxicity remains a problem, late toxicity rates are low and long-term feeding tube dependence is rare compared with conventional radiation therapy.