Clinical and dosimetric factors associated with a prolonged feeding tube requirement in patients treated with chemoradiotherapy (CRT) for head and neck cancers

A. S. Gokhale, B. T. McLaughlin, J. C. Flickinger, S. Beriwal, D. E. Heron, R. L. Ferris, J. Johnson, M. K. Gibson, A. Argiris, R. P. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Patients treated with chemoradiotherapy (CRT) for head and neck cancers often require feeding tubes (FTs) due to toxicity. We sought to identify factors associated with a prolonged FT requirement. Patients and methods: We retrospectively reviewed 80 patients treated with CRT for head and neck cancers. The pharyngeal constrictors (PCs), supraglottic larynx (SGL), and glottic larynx (GL) were contoured and the mean radiation doses and the volumes of each receiving >40, 50, 60, and 70 Gy (V40, V50, V60, and V70) were determined. Results: A total of 33 of 80 patients required a FT either before or during the course of CRT. Fifteen patients required the FT for ≥6 months. On univariate analysis, significant factors associated with a prolonged FT requirement were mean PC dose, PC-V60, PC-V70, SGL dose, SGL-V70, and advanced T3-T4 disease. Multivariate analyses found both PC-V70 and T3-T4 disease as significant factors.The proportions of patients requiring a FT ≥6 months were 8% and 28% for treatment plans with PC-V70 <30% and ≤30%, respectively. Conclusions: Increased radiation dose to the PCs is associated with a higher risk of a prolonged FT need. Dose sparing of the PC muscles may reduce this risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-151
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 14 2009

Keywords

  • Chemoradiation
  • Dysphagia
  • Feeding tubes
  • Head and neck cancer
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology

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