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Nugent B.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center | Parker M.J.,Northern Ireland Clinical Research Support Center | McIntyre I.A.,University of Ulster
Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics | Year: 2010

Background: For patients with a diagnosis of head and neck cancer, oral nutrition may not provide adequate nutrition during radical radiotherapy or chemoradiation treatment, resulting in enteral feeding initiation. Enteral feeding may be delivered via a nasogastric tube or by a gastrostomy tube. The present study aimed to determine how different treatment modalities impact on requirement for enteral feeding and which method of enteral feeding provided the most benefit to the patient, as demonstrated by weight loss and the number of unscheduled radiotherapy treatment interruptions. Methods: Patients who were treated with radical radiotherapy or chemoradiation between January 2004 and June 2007 were reviewed retrospectively (n = 196, male = 149, female = 47). Data were collected on demographics, diagnosis, T and N classification, nutritional status, unscheduled radiotherapy treatment interruptions, and type and duration of enteral feeding. Subjects were divided into three subgroups depending on the treatment received. Comparisons were then made between methods of enteral feeding. Results: Combined modality treatment (Induction Chemotherapy and Chemoradiation) results in a higher proportion of patients requiring enteral feeding (66-71% compared to 12% for radiotherapy). Patients fed via a prophylactic percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy lost the least amount of weight during treatment (-4.6% to +1.4%), although the method of enteral feeding did not statistically influence weight difference at the end of treatment. The enteral feeding method did not influence unscheduled radiotherapy treatment interruptions. Conclusions: Combined modality treatment results in a greater requirement for enteral feeding, with these patient groups having the greatest weight loss. The findings obtained in the present study indicate that the method of enteral feeding did not statistically influence weight loss at the end of treatment or unscheduled radiotherapy treatment interruptions. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 The British Dietetic Association Ltd.

Jeganathan R.,Regional Thoracic Surgical Unit | McGuigan J.,Regional Thoracic Surgical Unit | Campbell F.,Center for Cancer Research and Cell Biology | Lynch T.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center
European Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging | Year: 2011

Purpose: The aim of the study was to compare the pre-operative metabolic tumour length on FDG PET/CT with the resected pathological specimen in patients with oesophageal cancer. Methods: All patients diagnosed with oesophageal carcinoma who had undergone staging PET/CT imaging between the period of June 2002 and May 2008 who were then suitable for curative surgery, either with or without neo-adjuvant chemotherapy, were included in this study. Metabolic tumour length was assessed using both visual analysis and a maximum standardised uptake value (SUVmax) cutoff of 2.5. Results: Thirty-nine patients proceeded directly to curative surgical resection, whereas 48 patients received neo-adjuvant chemotherapy, followed by curative surgery. The 95% limits of agreement in the surgical arm were more accurate when the metabolic tumour length was visually assessed with a mean difference of -0.05 cm (SD 2.16 cm) compared to a mean difference of +2.42 cm (SD 3.46 cm) when assessed with an SUVmax cutoff of 2.5. In the neo-adjuvant group, the 95% limits of agreement were once again more accurate when assessed visually with a mean difference of -0.6 cm (SD 1.84 cm) compared to a mean difference of +1.58 cm (SD 3.1 cm) when assessed with an SUVmax cutoff of 2.5. Conclusion: This study confirms the high accuracy of PET/CT in measuring gross target volume (GTV) length. A visual method for GTV length measurement was demonstrated to be superior and more accurate than when using an SUVmax cutoff of 2.5. This has the potential of reducing the planning target volume with dose escalation to the tumour with a corresponding reduction in normal tissue complication probability. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

King R.B.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center
Physics in medicine and biology | Year: 2013

Flattening filter free (FFF) linear accelerators allow for an increase in instantaneous dose-rate of the x-ray pulses by a factor of 2-6 over the conventional flattened output. As a result, radiobiological investigations are being carried out to determine the effect of these higher dose-rates on cell response. The studies reported thus far have presented conflicting results, highlighting the need for further investigation. To determine the radiobiological impact of the increased dose-rates from FFF exposures a Varian Truebeam medical linear accelerator was used to irradiate two human cancer cell lines in vitro, DU-145 prostate and H460 non-small cell lung, with both flattened and FFF 6 MV beams. The fluence profile of the FFF beam was modified using a custom-designed Nylon compensator to produce a similar dose profile to the flattened beam (6X) at the cell surface but at a higher instantaneous dose-rate. For both cell lines there appeared to be no significant change in cell survival. Curve fitting coefficients for DU145 cells irradiated with constant average dose-rates were 6X: α = 0.09 ± 0.03, β = 0.03 ± 0.01 and 6FFF: α = 0.14 ± 0.13, β = 0.03 ± 0.02 with a significance of p = 0.75. For H460 cells irradiated with the same instantaneous dose-rate but different average dose-rate the fit coefficients were 6FFF (low dose-rate): α = 0.21 ± 0.11, 0.07 ± 0.02 and 6FFF (high dose-rate): α = 0.21 ± 0.16, 0.07 ± 0.03, with p = 0.79. The results indicate that collective damage behaviour does not occur at the instantaneous dose-rates investigated here and that the use of either modality should result in the same clinical outcome, however this will require further validation in vivo.

Valle J.W.,Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust | Eatock M.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center | Clueit B.,Pfizer | Gabriel Z.,Pfizer | And 2 more authors.
Cancer Treatment Reviews | Year: 2014

Introduction: Pancreatic neuroendocrine tumours (pNETs) are rare and the majority of patients present with advanced disease. Such patients have limited treatment options. We conducted a systematic review of published clinical trials of non-surgical interventions in pNET, to understand the efficacy, safety and health related quality of life (HRQoL) outcomes from the current evidence base. Methods: Electronic databases and manual bibliographic searches were conducted to identify relevant studies. Data were extracted by two independent reviewers. Results: Forty seven clinical studies met the predefined inclusion criteria. The following interventions were included: targeted therapies (two RCTs and six single-arm studies), chemotherapy (two RCTs, one prospective nonrandomised, comparative study and 14 single-arm studies);somatostatin analogues (SSA) and radiolabeled SSA therapies (nine single-arm studies), liver-directed therapies (six single-arm studies), mixed treatment regimens (one RCT, four single-arm studies) and other interventions such as interferon and recombinant human endostatin (one single-arm study for each). The paucity of RCT data and lack of consistency in reporting validated study outcomes and differing patient inclusion criteria between studies made it difficult to compare the relative efficacy of therapies. Discussion: The majority of published studies assessing treatment regimens for the management of pNET are single arm, non-randomised studies, often enrolling a small number of patients and not reporting clinically meaningful outcomes. However data from recently conducted studies assessing targeted therapies indicate that it is possible to conduct adequately powered RCTs reporting standardised oncological endpoints in this rare cancer. Further, similarly robust studies should be conducted to define the optimal treatment algorithm. © 2013 The Authors.

Walls G.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center | Napier S.,Royal Group of Hospitals Trust | Stewart D.,Northern Ireland Cancer Center
Frontiers in Oncology | Year: 2014

Background: Orbital metastases are an uncommon finding, being present in just 9% deceased patients with metastatic cancer. Only a quarter of patients with choroidal metastases have bilateral disease. Parotid cancer is not a common form of head and neck malignancy. Bilateral multifocal metastases from adenocarcinoma ex pleomorphic of parotid gland have been documented just once before in the literature. We present a similar case where palliative EBRT was used to gain local control with minimal toxicity. Case Presentation: The case of a 45-year-old Caucasian gentleman who presented to his general practitioner with otalgia and weight loss. Imaging revealed a mass in the deep lobe of the left parotid gland, invading into the medial pterygoid muscle. PET-CT revealed locoregional and distant lymphatic involvement plus disseminated skeletal metastases. Lymph node examination revealed adenocarcinoma ex pleomorphic histology. Within weeks of this diagnosis, the patient developed rapidly progressive visual impairment. Ophthalmologists found multifocal uveal masses bilaterally. Palliative fractions of external beam radiotherapy were delivered to the orbits before combination chemotherapy. We discuss the patient's presentation, histopathology, and management, with support from the literature regarding applied and related therapies. Summary: In this rare presentation of disseminated malignancy affecting the choroid bilaterally, the authors demonstrate the application of palliative EBRT to good local effect. Given the nature of this treatment and that of the metastases, in the setting of incurable disease orbital morbidity is likely to occur again before the patient's death. Awareness of the initial symptoms is important to provide prompt care and maintain quality of life. © 2014 Walls, Napier and Stewart.

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