Our purpose was to report outcomes of elderly patients who underwent definitive treatment involving radiation therapy for esophageal cancer at our institution.We performed a retrospective review of patients aged =75 years with esophageal cancer treated with definitive radiation therapy (=45 Gy) at our institution from 1997 to 2019. Acute and late Radiation Therapy Oncology Group grade 3+ toxicities were recorded. Survival was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method.Of the 89 patients included, median age was 80 and 78% were male. Median adjusted Charlson Comorbidity Index and Karnofsky Performance Status were 5 (3-12) and 80 (50-100), respectively. The majority of cancers were adenocarcinoma (58%), distal (67%), and stage III (62%). Fifty-eight percent underwent definitive chemoradiotherapy, and one-third underwent preoperative intent chemoradiotherapy. Median prescribed dose was 50 Gy (45-66 Gy), and intensity modulated radiation therapy was used in 76%. Eighty-five percent completed the radiation therapy course. Among these, 20% had radiation therapy breaks. For those receiving concurrent chemotherapy, 37% had a dose reduction and 39.5% had a break/cycle reduction. Acute grade 3+ toxicity was 22%, with 2% grade 5 toxicity. Twenty-one of the 29 patients (72%) treated with preoperative intent underwent surgery. There were no deaths 90 days postoperatively. For patients who underwent surgery, 1- and 2-year overall survival were 95% and 84%. For those who did not undergo surgery, 1- and 2-year overall survival were 70% and 52%.There is a role for aggressive radiation therapy in well-selected elderly patients with esophageal cancer. However, optimization of supportive care, chemotherapy regimens, radiation therapy dose/fractionation, and surgical indications are needed to reduce toxicity.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.adro.2020.05.001
View details for PubMedID 33305080
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC7718494