Definitive radiation therapy without chemotherapy for human papillomavirus-positive head and neck cancer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background To report a single institutional experience with definitive radiation therapy alone for human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive head and neck cancer. Methods A total of 67 patients were treated by radiation therapy alone to a median dose of 70 Gy (range, 66-72 Gy) for squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. Paraffin-embedded, formalin-fixed pretreatment tumor tissues were used to establish HPV-positivity using standardized techniques of immunohistochemistry for p16 and polymerase chain reaction for HPV. Results In all, 23 patients with HPV-positive cancers were identified. With a median follow-up of 28 months (range, 6-85 months), the 3-year actuarial rates of overall survival, locoregional control, and distant metastasis-free survival were 83%, 90%, and 88%, respectively. Conclusion These findings attest to the exquisite radiosensitivity of HPV-positive head and neck cancer. The clinical outcomes observed from this selected series compare favorably with historical controls treated by more intensive chemoradiotherapy strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1652-1656
Number of pages5
JournalHead and Neck
Volume35
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013

Keywords

  • head and neck cancer
  • human papillomavirus
  • radiation therapy
  • radiosensitivity
  • squamous cell carcinoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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