Intraoperative radiotherapy for extremity soft-tissue sarcomas: can long-term local control be achieved?


                <p>Intraoperative electron-beam radiation therapy (IOERT) during limb-sparing surgery has the advantage of delivering a single high boost dose to sarcoma residues and surgical bed area near to radiosensitive structures with limited toxicity. Retrospective studies have suggested that IOERT may improve local control compared to standard radiotherapy and we aimed to demonstrate this theory. Therefore, we performed an observational prospective study to determine (1) if it is possible to achieve high local control by adding IOERT to external-beam radiation therapy (EBRT) in extremity soft-tissue sarcomas (STS), (2) if it is possible to improve long-term survival rates, and (3) if toxicity could be reduced with IOERT</p> 

                </span><h3>Materials and methods</h3> 
                <p>From 1995−2003, 39 patients with extremity STS were treated with IOERT and postoperative radiotherapy. The median follow-up time was 13.2 years (0.7–19). Complications, locoregional control and survival rates were collected.</p> 

                <p>Actuarial local control was attained in 32 of 39 patients (82%). Control was achieved in 88% of patients with primary disease and in 50% of those with recurrent tumors (<em>p</em> = 0.01). Local control was shown in 93% of patients with negative margins and in 50% of those with positive margins (<em>p</em> = 0.002). Limb-sparing was achieved in 32 patients (82%). The overall survival rate was 64%. 13% of patients had grade ≥3 acute toxicity, and 12% developed grade ≥3 chronic toxicity.</p> 

                <p>IOERT used as a boost to EBRT provides high local control and limb-sparing rates in patients with STS of the extremities, with less toxicity than EBRT alone.</p> 
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