Patterns of Care and Barriers to Utilization of Definitive Concurrent Chemoradiation Therapy for Stage III Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer in Russia

Abstract

Background

Definitive concurrent chemoradiation (cCRT) is offered to only 3% of Russian patients with stage III NSCLC. To determine the patterns of care and barriers to cCRT utilization in Russia, we conducted a survey of practicing radiation oncologists (ROs).

Methods

Electronic IRB-approved survey containing 15 questions was distributed to Russian ROs. Fisher’s exact test or Cochran-Armitage test of trend was used to assess the associations between clinical experience, practice type, and patterns of care.

Results

We analyzed 58 questionnaires completed by ROs—16 respondents from tertiary referral hospitals, and 42 from community or private centers. A total of 88% of respondents formulate treatment recommendations in multi-disciplinary tumor boards. For unresectable stage III NSCLC, the most common recommendation is sequential CRT (50%), followed by concurrent CRT (40%), with an observed higher utilization of cCRT in tertiary centers (9/16, 56% vs 14/42, 33%). Of the respondents, 31% do not offer cCRT to their pts. Among reasons for avoiding cCRT are (1) poor performance of pts (76%); (2) high toxicity of therapy (55%); (3) lack of consensus among tumor board members (33%); and (4) preference for sequential CRT (31%). Only 3% do not irradiate elective LNs. Eighty-six percent of respondents counsel their NSCLC pts regarding smoking cessation.

Conclusions

Despite level 1 evidence, cCRT is rarely used in Russia for pts with locally advanced NSCLC, and preference for sequential therapy and concerns over high toxicity are the most common barriers. Education of Russian ROs may increase cCRT utilization, leading to improved survival, notably in the era of maintenance immunotherapy.

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Authors

Contributions

ND, MC, and TM designed the study; CD and YC performed data analysis; ND, MC, IT, VK, ST, KL, CRT, and TM carried out the study and reviewed the drafted manuscript, and participated in finalizing the manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Timur Mitin.

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Oregon Health and Sciences University, IRB protocol 11149

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Dengina, N., Chernykh, M., Degnin, C. et al. Patterns of Care and Barriers to Utilization of Definitive Concurrent Chemoradiation Therapy for Stage III Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer in Russia. J Canc Educ (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13187-021-01966-8

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Keywords

  • Chemoradiation therapy
  • Non-small cell lung cancer
  • Russia