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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 68

of 'Adjuvant radiation therapy for women with newly diagnosed, non-metastatic breast cancer'

The importance of postoperative radiation therapy in multimodality management of locally advanced breast cancer: a phase II trial of neoadjuvant MVAC, surgery, and radiation.
Abdel-Wahab M, Wolfson A, Raub W, Mies C, Brandon A, Morrell L, Lee Y, Ling S, Markoe A
Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1998;40(4):875.
PURPOSE: To determine the impact of postoperative radiation on locoregional relapse and overall survival rate in a multimodality protocol for locally advanced breast cancer (LABC).
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Of the patients entered in the protocol, 55 were evaluable. Treatment consisted of: neoadjuvant MVAC (methotrexate, vinblastine, adriamycin, and cisplatin) until a maximum response had been achieved; modified radical mastectomy; 6 courses of postoperative adjuvant MVAC chemotherapy, and chest wall irradiation (CWXRT). Multivariate analysis of locoregional response and overall survival was done.
RESULTS: Of the total, 42 patients received chest wall radiation; 28 of these also received radiation to regional lymph nodes. Chest wall doses ranged from 45 Gy to 50.4 Gy to the whole chest wall, with 31 patients receiving an additional chest-wall boost. The incidence of locoregional relapse with and without radiation was 7% vs. 31%, respectively (p = 0.026). An overall survival benefit was seen in those receiving radiation, with a mean overall survival of 50 months vs. 20 months, and a 3-year overall survival of 88% vs. 46% with and without radiation, respectively (p = 0.003). Multivariate analysis showed that overall survival was affected by the presence of pathological CR (p = .047), the number of pre-operative chemotherapy cycles (p = .036) and whether or not they received radiation (p = 0.003). Neither the interval between surgery and radiation, technique of radiation, nor radiation modality significantly affected local control.
CONCLUSION: The significant improvement in local regional control and overall survival with the addition of radiation suggests that radiation should be an integral part of multimodality management of locally advanced breast cancer.
Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Miami, Jackson Memorial Hospital, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, FL, USA.