Phase II study of cisplatin and 5-fluorouracil with concurrent radiotherapy in advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus: a Japan Esophageal Oncology Group (JEOG)/Japan Clinical Oncology Group trial (JCOG9516).Jpn J Clin Oncol. 2004 Oct; 34(10):615-9.JJ
In Japan, concurrent chemoradiotherapy is the standard treatment for unresectable esophageal cancer. The optimal combination of chemotherapeutic agents and radiotherapy dose remains controversial. The present study consists of a phase II trial of a cisplatin (CDDP)/5-fluorouracil (5-FU) infusion with concurrent radiotherapy in patients with unresectable, advanced esophageal cancer.
Between March 13, 1996, and April 28, 1998, 60 patients with advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the thoracic esophagus having either T4 tumor or distant lymph node metastasis (M1 Lym) were enrolled in this study. CDDP 70 mg/m(2) was administered on days 1 and 29, and 5-FU 700 mg/m(2)/day was administered on days 1-4 and 29-32. Fractionated radiotherapy was performed on days 1-21 and 29-49; a total dose of 60 Gy was delivered at the rate of 2 Gy per fraction.
The overall response rate of all the 60 registered patients was 68.3% (41/60), and the complete response rate was 15% (9/60). The median survival time was 305.5 days, and the 2-year survival rate was 31.5%. One toxicity-related death occurred. The major form of toxicity exceeding grade 2 was found to be myelosuppression; grade 4 toxicity was observed in five patients.
Based on the overall response rate, the results obtained from the present trial do not appear to be promising. However, it is currently suitable for the treatment of patients with unresectable, advanced esophageal cancer because of certain clinical advantages, a higher CR rate and a lower incidence of fistula formation. A phase II/III trial will be started in order to compare low-dose continual CDDP/5-FU infusion and concurrent radiotherapy with the results obtained in this study.