A prospective phase II study of neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy (CRT) for resectable esophageal squamous cell carcinoma was conducted from May 1993 to March 1996. A total of 88 patients fitted the eligibility criteria and were treated with two courses of induction chemotherapy (cisplatin 60 mg/m2/day on day 1 and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) 1 000 mg/m2/day on days 2-6) with concurrent hyperfractionated radiotherapy (48 Gy/40 fractions/4 weeks) followed by esophagectomy or definitive CRT comprising 4 cycles of cisplatin/5-FU and hyperfractionated radiotherapy (additional 12 Gy) with intracavitary brachytherapy (9 Gy). Clinical response and downstaging were achieved in 83% and 42% of the patients, respectively. With a median follow-up of 77 months, median survival time was 18 months with a 5-year survival rate of 23%. The clinical responses to CRT and surgery were independent prognostic factors for overall survival. Among the intended surgery group (n = 52), 41 (79%) patients underwent surgery and 36 had a resection with a pathologic complete response rate of 43%. When compared with a matched historical control (n = 40), there was a significant survival benefit in the multimodality arm (p = 0.04). This multimodality therapy was feasible and its efficacy was promising, especially when surgical resection was performed. The therapeutic benefit of neoadjuvant CRT remains to be assessed in large well-designed randomized trials, one of which is ongoing at our institution.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging