Metastasis-directed stereotactic body radiation therapy in the management of oligometastatic head and neck cancer

Abstract

Introduction

Recently major efforts have been made to define the oligometastatic setting, but for head and neck cancer (HNC) limited data are available. We aimed to evaluate outcome of oligometastatic HNC treated with Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) as metastasis-directed therapy.

Materials and methods

We analyzed patients treated with SBRT on a maximum of five oligometastases from HNC, in up to two organs. Concomitant treatment was allowed. End points were toxicity, local control of treated metastases (LC), progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS).

Results

48 consecutive patients and 71 lesions were treated. With a follow-up of 20.2 months, most common primary tumors were larynx (29.2%) and salivary glands (29.2%), while common site of metastases was lung (59.1%). Median dose was 48 Gy (21–75) in 3–8 fractions. Treatment was well tolerated, with two patients reporting mild pain and nausea. LC rates at 1 and 2 years were 83.1% and 70.2%. Previous local therapy (HR 4.97; p = 0.002), oligoprogression (HR 4.07; p = 0.031) and untreated metastases (HR 4.19; p = 0.027) were associated with worse LC. PFS at 1 and 2 years were 42.2% and 20.0%. Increasing age (HR 1.03; p = 0.010), non-adenoid cystic carcinoma (HR 2.57; p = 0.034) and non-lung metastases (HR 2.20; p = 0.025) were associated with worse PFS. One- and 2-years OS were 81.0% and 67.1%. Worse performance status (HR 2.91; p = 0.049), non-salivary primary (HR 19.9; p = 0.005), non-lung metastases (HR 2.96; p = 0.040) were correlated with inferior OS.

Conclusions

SBRT can be considered a safe metastasis-directed therapy in oligometastatic HNC.

Efficacy of the treatment seems to be higher when administered upfront in the management of metastatic disease; however, selection of patients need to be improved due to the relevant risk of appearance of new metastatic site after SBRT.

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Franzese, C., Badalamenti, M., Teriaca, A. et al. Metastasis-directed stereotactic body radiation therapy in the management of oligometastatic head and neck cancer. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00432-021-03518-5

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Keywords

  • Sbrt
  • Oligometastases
  • Oligometastatic
  • Head neck cancer
  • Salivary gland cancer
  • Sabr