Oncology Publications


Radiation Treatment for Cervical Esophagus: Patterns of Practice Study in Canada, 1996

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International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics





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PURPOSE: To assess the patterns of practice among Canadian radiation oncologists who treat esophageal cancers, using a trans-Canada survey, completed at the end of 1996.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: One of 3 case presentations of different stages of cervical esophageal cancer was randomly assigned and sent to participating radiation oncologists by mail. Respondents were asked to fill in questionnaires regarding treatment techniques and to outline target volumes for the boost phase of radiotherapy. Radiation oncologists from 26 of 27 (96%) of all Canadian centers participated.

RESULTS: High-energy X-rays (>/= 10 MV) were employed by 68% of the respondents in part of the treatment course. The majority (83%) of the radiation oncologists used at least two phases of treatment. Very few, 10 of 59 (17%), responses started with multifield treatment. The most frequently used prescription dose was 60 Gy/30 fractions/6 weeks, given with concurrent chemotherapy. Dose prescriptions were to the isocenter in 39 of 48 (81%) or to a particular isodose line in 9 of 48 (19%) of respondents.

CONCLUSION: There was a variety of radiation treatment techniques in this trans-Canada survey. The majority of the patients had combined cisplatin-based chemoradiation. The isocenter was not used consistently as a dose prescription point.