Concerns have been raised about the potential for worse treatment outcomes because of dosimetric inaccuracies related to tumor motion and increased toxicity caused by the spread of low-dose radiation to normal tissues in patients with locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated with intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT). We therefore performed a population-based comparative effectiveness analysis of IMRT, conventional 3-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT), and 2-dimensional radiation therapy (2D-RT) in stage III NSCLC.We used the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER)-Medicare database to identify a cohort of patients diagnosed with stage III NSCLC from 2002 to 2009 treated with IMRT, 3D-CRT, or 2D-RT. Using Cox regression and propensity score matching, we compared survival and toxicities of these treatments.The proportion of patients treated with IMRT increased from 2% in 2002 to 25% in 2009, and the use of 2D-RT decreased from 32% to 3%. In univariate analysis, IMRT was associated with improved overall survival (OS) (hazard ratio [HR] 0.90, P=.02) and cancer-specific survival (CSS) (HR 0.89, P=.02). After controlling for confounders, IMRT was associated with similar OS (HR 0.94, P=.23) and CSS (HR 0.94, P=.28) compared with 3D-CRT. Both techniques had superior OS compared with 2D-RT. IMRT was associated with similar toxicity risks on multivariate analysis compared with 3D-CRT. Propensity score matched model results were similar to those from adjusted models.In this population-based analysis, IMRT for stage III NSCLC was associated with similar OS and CSS and maintained similar toxicity risks compared with 3D-CRT.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2013.12.010
View details for PubMedID 24495591