Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Am J Clin Oncol


Background: Lung stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) has become a standard treatment option for early stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who are medically inoperable. The influence of radiation dose/volume parameters on quality of life is not known. Our hypothesis is that clinically meaningful declines in quality of life over time will be associated with increased radiation lung dose/volume parameters.

Objectives: To investigate clinical toxicity and quality of life (QOL) outcomes of stage I NSCLC patients after SBRT as a function of radiation dose/volume parameters. Methods: In this IRB-approved study, 55 stage I NSCLC patients who received SBRT (12 Gy x 4) and completed QOL forms were analyzed. Clinical symptoms and QOL were measured at baseline and at 3, 6, 12, 18, 24, and 36 months post-SBRT. Clinical toxicity was graded using the common terminology criteria for adverse effects (CTCAE v4.0). Quality of life was followed using the validated Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Trial Outcome Index (FACT-TOI) instrument. Dosimetric parameters, including the mean lung radiation dose (MLD), and the volume of normal lung receiving > 5, 10, 13 or 20 Gy (V5, V10, V13, and V20) were measured from the radiation treatment plan. Student's t-test and Pearson correlation analyses were used to examine the relationships between radiation lung metrics and clinically meaningful changes in QOL and/or clinical toxicities. Kaplan-Meier method was used to estimate rates of local control (LC), disease free survival (DFS), and overall survival (OS).

Results: With a median follow-up of 24 months, the 3 year LC, DFS, and OS were 93%, 65% and 84%, respectively, with 5.5% grade 3 toxicity and no grade 4 or 5 toxicities. Clinically meaningful declines in patient reported QOL (FACT-TOI, lung cancer subscale, physical well-being, and/or functional well-being) post-treatment significantly correlated with increased dosimetric parameters, such as V10, V13, and V20.

Conclusions: While lung SBRT is associated with excellent LC and minimal clinical toxicity for early stage NSCLC, clinically meaningful declines in QOL significantly correlated with increasing lung dose/volume parameters. This suggests that further improvements in the techniques of lung SBRT have the potential to further enhance patients' QOL following this treatment.





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