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Morris L.M.,Crown Princess Mary Cancer Center | Izard M.A.,Materials Hospital | Wan W.-Y.,University of Sydney

Purpose: To evaluate whether nadir prostate-specific antigen (nPSA), time to nPSA (TnPSA), and nPSA 3-years post-treatment are prognostic for prostate cancer (PC) in patients treated with temporary brachytherapy plus external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) and hormonal manipulation. Methods and Materials: We retrospectively analyzed our database of 253 patients with Stage T1-T3 N0M0 PC who underwent brachytherapy with temporary brachytherapy plus EBRT. All patients received neoadjuvant androgen deprivation for a median of 6 months. Treatment consisted of three pulses of pseudo pulsed-dose-rate brachytherapy to a median dose of 18. Gy with 50.4. Gy in 28 fractions of EBRT. Treatment took place between December 1999 and March2006. Results: At a median of 6-years followup, nPSA value was a predictor of biochemical control. Rising nPSA categories of <0.01, 0.01-<0.05, 0.05-≤0.1, 0.1-≤ 1.0, or >1.0. ng/mL correlated with a deteriorating 5-year biochemical control (nBED) by the Phoenix definition of 100%, 90.0%, 82.5%, 64.3%, and 10%, respectively. A highly statistically significant relationship between nPSA value and subsequent clinical failure is also demonstrated. The relationship between TnPSA and nBED was strongly significant (p<. 0.0001), with a significantly longer nPSA for patients who had Phoenix nBED. A PSA of <1.5. ng/mL achieved 3-year post radiation therapy was prognostic for biochemical and clinical disease control (p<. 0.0001). Conclusion: The nPSA, TnPSA, and reaching a PSA cutoff level of <1.5. ng/mL at 3 years post-treatment can provide useful prognostic information on long-term biochemical and clinical control of PC in patients treated with pseudo PDR, EBRT, and hormone manipulation. © 2015 . Source

Ahern V.,Crown Princess Mary Cancer Center
Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology

Methods Children under the age of 16 years who received a course of radiation between January 1997 and December 2010 and were enrolled on the Registry form the subjects of this study.Results A total of 2232 courses of RT were delivered, predominantly with radical intent (87%). Registrations fluctuated over time, but around one-half of children diagnosed with cancer undergo a course of RT. The most prevalent age range at time of RT was 10-15 years, and the most common diagnoses were central nervous system tumours (34%) and acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (20%).Conclusions The Registry provides a reflection of the patterns of care of children undergoing RT in Australia and a mechanism for determining the resources necessary to manage children by RT (human, facilities and emerging technologies, such as proton therapy). It lacks the detail to provide information on radiotherapy quality and disease outcomes which should be the subject of separate audit studies. The utility of the Registry has been hampered by its voluntary nature and varying needs for consent. Completion of registry forms is a logical requirement for inclusion in the definition of a subspecialist in paediatric radiation oncology.Introduction The aim of this study was to evaluate the utility of an Australasian registry ('the Registry') for children undergoing radiation treatment (RT). © 2014 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists. Source

Aim: Since 2005, radiation oncology trainees in Australia and New Zealand have had to undertake a piece of original research during training, and submit a manuscript, as first author, for senior peer-review. Satisfactory completion of this requirement is one component of eligibility to sit the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists Fellowship examinations. The purpose of this study was to examine the value of this curriculum requirement, including the publication rates and potential barriers to trainee research. Materials and methods: An online survey was sent to 116 radiation oncologists/trainees who trained since the mandatory research requirement was introduced (2005-2011). Questions concerned research topics, publications, subsequent research activity, perceptions on barriers to research and aids to conducting research during training. A web-based search of PubMed by author name was carried out to complete and verify publication statistics. Results: In total, 108 (93.1%) of the 116 trainees across 20 centres who submitted their research papers to the Radiation Oncology Faculty Research Committee were successful in meeting the required standard first time. Half of these trainees ultimately published their paper in a peer-reviewed journal. Of trainees responding to the survey, 62% presented their research at a scientific meeting. Most of the studies were either retrospective (62.3%) or dosimetry/physics projects (10.1%). The main problems encountered in conducting projects were competing clinical commitments and lack of dedicated research time. Notably, long ethics approval processes, lack of supervision and statistical support for projects were not considered barriers. Conclusion: This mandatory research requirement ensures trainees initiate and complete at least one project during their training. Since the introduction of this curriculum component, half of the research projects have resulted in publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Increased 'protected time' and training in scientific writing and methods may improve publication rates and quality. This first review of the Australian and New Zealand radiation oncology trainee research requirement highlights areas that need to be addressed to further support and foster a research culture among junior radiation oncologists. © 2014. Source

Butow P.N.,University of Sydney | Bell M.L.,University of Sydney | Smith A.B.,University of Sydney | Fardell J.E.,University of Sydney | And 8 more authors.
BMC Cancer

Background: Up to 70% of cancer survivors report clinically significant levels of fear of cancer recurrence (FCR). Despite the known negative impact of FCR on psychological wellbeing and quality of life, little research has investigated interventions for high FCR. Our team has developed and piloted a novel intervention (Conquer Fear) based on the Self-Regulatory Executive Function Model and Relational Frame Theory and is evaluating Conquer Fear in a randomised controlled trial (RCT). We aim to compare the efficacy and cost-efficacy of the Conquer Fear Intervention and relaxation training in reducing the impact of FCR.Methods/design: This study is a multi-centre RCT with 260 participants randomised either to the Conquer Fear Intervention or relaxation training. Both interventions will be delivered in five sessions over 10 weeks by trained psychologists, psychiatrists and social workers with five or more years experience in oncology. Conquer Fear sessions use attentional training, detached mindfulness, meta-cognitive therapy, values clarification and psycho-education to help patients change the way they regulate and respond to thoughts about cancer recurrence. Relaxation training includes training in progressive and passive muscle relaxation, meditative relaxation, visualisation and " quick relaxation" techniques. Relaxation was chosen to control for therapist time and attention and has good face-validity as an intervention. The primary outcome is fear of cancer recurrence. Secondary outcomes include distress, quality of life, unmet needs, and health care utilisation. Participants complete questionnaires prior to starting the intervention, immediately after completing the intervention, 3 and 6 months later. Eligible participants are early-stage breast or colorectal cancer survivors who have completed hospital-based treatment between 2 months and 5 years prior to study entry and report a score in the clinical range on the Fear of Cancer Recurrence Inventory. The biostatistician is blinded to group allocation and participants are blinded to which intervention is being evaluated. Randomisation is computer generated, stratified by therapist, and uses sequentially numbered sealed envelopes.Discussion: If successful, the study will provide an evidence-based intervention to reduce psychological morbidity in cancer survivors, and reduce overall health care costs due to more appropriate use of follow-up care and other health services in this very large population.Trial registration: Trial registration: ACTRN12612000404820. © 2013 Butow et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Denham J.W.,University of Newcastle | Joseph D.,Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital | Lamb D.S.,Wellington Cancer Center | Spry N.A.,Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital | And 17 more authors.
The Lancet Oncology

Background: We investigated whether 18 months of androgen suppression plus radiotherapy, with or without 18 months of zoledronic acid, is more effective than 6 months of neoadjuvant androgen suppression plus radiotherapy with or without zoledronic acid. Methods: We did an open-label, randomised, 2 × 2 factorial trial in men with locally advanced prostate cancer (either T2a N0 M0 prostatic adenocarcinomas with prostate-specific antigen [PSA] ≥10 μg/L and a Gleason score of ≥7, or T2b-4 N0 M0 tumours regardless of PSA and Gleason score). We randomly allocated patients by computer-generated minimisation-stratified by centre, baseline PSA, tumour stage, Gleason score, and use of a brachytherapy boost-to one of four groups in a 1:1:1:1 ratio. Patients in the control group were treated with neoadjuvant androgen suppression with leuprorelin (22·5 mg every 3 months, intramuscularly) for 6 months (short-term) and radiotherapy alone (designated STAS); this procedure was either followed by another 12 months of androgen suppression with leuprorelin (intermediate-term; ITAS) or accompanied by 18 months of zoledronic acid (4 mg every 3 months for 18 months, intravenously; STAS plus zoledronic acid) or by both (ITAS plus zoledronic acid). The primary endpoint was prostate cancer-specific mortality. This analysis represents the first, preplanned assessment of oncological endpoints, 5 years after treatment. Analysis was by intention-to-treat. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00193856. Findings: Between Oct 20, 2003, and Aug 15, 2007, 1071 men were randomly assigned to STAS (n=268), STAS plus zoledronic acid (n=268), ITAS (n=268), and ITAS plus zoledronic acid (n=267). Median follow-up was 7·4 years (IQR 6·5-8·4). Cumulative incidences of prostate cancer-specific mortality were 4·1% (95% CI 2·2-7·0) in the STAS group, 7·8% (4·9-11·5) in the STAS plus zoledronic acid group, 7·4% (4·6-11·0) in the ITAS group, and 4·3% (2·3-7·3) in the ITAS plus zoledronic acid group. Cumulative incidence of all-cause mortality was 17·0% (13·0-22·1), 18·9% (14·6-24·2), 19·4% (15·0-24·7), and 13·9% (10·3-18·8), respectively. Neither prostate cancer-specific mortality nor all-cause mortality differed between control and experimental groups. Cumulative incidence of PSA progression was 34·2% (28·6-39·9) in the STAS group, 39·6% (33·6-45·5) in the STAS plus zoledronic acid group, 29·2% (23·8-34·8) in the ITAS group, and 26·0% (20·8-31·4) in the ITAS plus zoledronic acid group. Compared with STAS, no difference was noted in PSA progression with ITAS or STAS plus zoledronic acid; however, ITAS plus zoledronic acid reduced PSA progression (sub-hazard ratio [SHR] 0·71, 95% CI 0·53-0·95; p=0·021). Cumulative incidence of local progression was 4·1% (2·2-7·0) in the STAS group, 6·1% (3·7-9·5) in the STAS plus zoledronic acid group, 1·5% (0·5-3·7) in the ITAS group, and 3·4% (1·7-6·1) in the ITAS plus zoledronic acid group; no differences were noted between groups. Cumulative incidences of bone progression were 7·5% (4·8-11·1), 14·6% (10·6-19·2), 8·4% (5·5-12·2), and 7·6% (4·8-11·2), respectively. Compared with STAS, STAS plus zoledronic acid increased the risk of bone progression (SHR 1·90, 95% CI 1·14-3·17; p=0·012), but no differences were noted with the other two groups. Cumulative incidence of distant progression was 14·7% (10·7-19·2) in the STAS group, 17·3% (13·0-22·1) in the STAS plus zoledronic acid group, 14·2% (10·3-18·7) in the ITAS group, and 11·1% (7·6-15·2) in the ITAS plus zoledronic acid group; no differences were recorded between groups. Cumulative incidence of secondary therapeutic intervention was 25·6% (20·5-30·9), 28·9% (23·5-34·5), 20·7% (16·1-25·9), and 15·3% (11·3-20·0), respectively. Compared with STAS, ITAS plus zoledronic acid reduced the need for secondary therapeutic intervention (SHR 0·67, 95% CI 0·48-0·95; p=0·024); no differences were noted with the other two groups. An interaction between trial factors was recorded for Gleason score; therefore, we did pairwise comparisons between all groups. Post-hoc analyses suggested that the reductions in PSA progression and decreased need for secondary therapeutic intervention with ITAS plus zoledronic acid were restricted to tumours with a Gleason score of 8-10, and that ITAS was better than STAS in tumours with a Gleason score of 7 or lower. Long-term morbidity and quality-of-life scores were not affected adversely by 18 months of androgen suppression or zoledronic acid. Interpretation: Compared with STAS, ITAS plus zoledronic acid was more effective for treatment of prostate cancers with a Gleason score of 8-10, and ITAS alone was effective for tumours with a Gleason score of 7 or lower. Nevertheless, these findings are based on secondary endpoint data and post-hoc analyses and must be regarded cautiously. Long- term follow-up is necessary, as is external validation of the interaction between zoledronic acid and Gleason score. STAS plus zoledronic acid can be ruled out as a potential therapeutic option. Funding: National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Australia, Abbott Pharmaceuticals Australia, New Zealand Health Research Council, New Zealand Cancer Society, University of Newcastle (Australia), Calvary Health Care (Calvary Mater Newcastle Radiation Oncology Fund), Hunter Medical Research Institute, Maitland Cancer Appeal, Cancer Standards Institute New Zealand. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Source

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