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Schaffer, Moshe; Krych, M.; Pachmann, S.; Abdel-Rahman, Sultan; Schaffer, Pamela Manuela; Ertl-Wagner, Birgit; Dühmke, Eckhart; Issels, Rolf-Dieter (2003): Feasibility and morbidity of combined hyperthermia and radiochemotherapy in recurrent rectal cancer - Preliminary results. In: Onkologie, No. 2: pp. 120-124




Background: The local recurrence rate of colorectal cancer has been significantly reduced due to the use of combined radiochemotherapy. Despite this improvement regarding locally advanced tumour recurrences, the treatment strategy for pre-treated patients remains difficult and unresolved. Patients and Methods: We analysed treatment and follow-up data of 14 patients with local recurrence of rectal cancer who were treated with radiation therapy (RT), chemotherapy (CT) and regional hyperthermia (RHT) from November 1997 to December 2001. Nine of these patients had received irradiation and CT (=pre-treated patients) in the past. For this group, 30.6-39.6 Gy RT, 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) as a continuous infusion over 5 days per week (350 mg/m(2)/24 h) combined with RHT twice a week was given. The 5 remaining patients (=not pre-treated) received conformal irradiation of 45 Gy with a boost between 9 and 14.4 Gy, combined with continuous infusion of 5-FU on days 1-4, and 29-33 (500 mg/m(2)/24 h), and RHT twice a week. Response to therapy was evaluated by means of computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and by clinical follow-up. Results: Among 13 evaluated cases, the overall objective response rate was 54% (5 complete responses, 2 partial responses). At mean follow-up of 13.9 months (range 5-32 months) 7 patients were alive. Conclusion: The therapeutic regimen appears to be active in the treatment of local recurrences of rectal cancer. Larger-scaled studies are needed to evaluate the potency of hyperthermia in this therapeutic strategy.