Radiation therapy after a partial response to CHOP chemotherapy for aggressive lymphomas

Richard B. Wilder, Maria A. Rodriguez, Susan L. Tucker, Chul S. Ha, Mark A. Hess, Fernando F. Cabanillas, James D. Cox

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Purpose: To analyze the results with involved-field radiotherapy after aggressive lymphomas had decreased in size by 50-99% in response to cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (CHOP)-based chemotherapy. Methods and Materials: From 1988 through 1996, 294 previously untreated patients with Working Formulation intermediate-grade or large-cell immunoblastic lymphomas underwent CHOP-based chemotherapy on 2 consecutive protocols at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Forty-four (15%) of these patients achieved, based on international working group guidelines, a partial (50-75%) response (n = 25), or unconfirmed complete (76-99%) response (n = 19) to a median of 6 cycles of chemotherapy. These patients were treated with salvage involved-field radiotherapy (n = 32) or chemotherapy (n = 12), e.g., MINE-ESHAP, without autologous stem-cell rescue (ASCR). Results: Median follow-up was 43 months. Partial responders experienced similar outcomes to unconfirmed complete responders. Local control (4-year rates: 86% vs. 53%, p = 0.009) and progression-free survival (4-year rates: 67% vs. 8%, p < 0.0001), but not overall survival (4-year rates: 70% vs. 50%, p = 0.067) were significantly better in those who received salvage radiotherapy, which was well tolerated. Conclusion: Progression-free and overall survival in aggressive lymphoma patients who underwent salvage radiotherapy were similar to results reported for high-dose chemotherapy with ASCR. The role of salvage radiotherapy in partial and unconfirmed complete responders to CHOP chemotherapy justifies examination in a large, cooperative group trial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)743-749
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2001


  • Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
  • Partial response
  • Radiotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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