Executive Summary of the American Radium Society Appropriate Use Criteria for Operable Esophageal and Gastroesophageal Junction Adenocarcinoma: Systematic Review and Guidelines

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International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics


PURPOSE: Limited guidance exists regarding the relative effectiveness of treatment options for nonmetastatic, operable patients with adenocarcinoma of the esophagus or gastroesophageal junction (GEJ). In this systematic review, the American Radium Society (ARS) gastrointestinal expert panel convened to develop Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) evaluating how neoadjuvant and/or adjuvant treatment regimens compared with each other, surgery alone, or definitive chemoradiation in terms of response to therapy, quality of life, and oncologic outcomes.

METHODS AND MATERIALS: Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) methodology was used to develop an extensive analysis of peer-reviewed phase 2R and phase 3 randomized controlled trials as well as meta-analyses found within the Ovid Medline, Cochrane Central, and Embase databases between 2009 to 2019. These studies were used to inform the expert panel, which then rated the appropriateness of various treatments in 4 broadly representative clinical scenarios through a well-established consensus methodology (modified Delphi).

RESULTS: For a medically operable nonmetastatic patient with a cT3 and/or cN+ adenocarcinoma of the esophagus or GEJ (Siewert I-II), the panel most strongly recommends neoadjuvant chemoradiation. For a cT2N0M0 patient with high-risk features, the panel recommends neoadjuvant chemoradiation as usually appropriate. For patients found to have pathologically involved nodes (pN+) who did not receive any neoadjuvant therapy, the panel recommends adjuvant chemoradiation as usually appropriate. These guidelines assess the appropriateness of various dose-fractionating schemes and target volumes.

CONCLUSIONS: Chemotherapy and/or radiation regimens for esophageal cancer are still evolving with many areas of active investigation. These guidelines are intended for the use of practitioners and patients who desire information about the management of operable esophageal adenocarcinoma.

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