In a recent study titled “Patterns of Recurrence and Role of Pelvic Radiotherapy in Ovarian Clear Cell Adenocarcinoma” published in the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer, a team of researchers from Loyola University Health System found that pelvic radiotherapy could be beneficial in the treatment of ovarian clear cell adenocarcinoma (CCA), a rare form of ovarian cancer, in women who undergo surgery and subsequent chemotherapy.
“Despite the intense therapeutic and surgical regimen typically used to treat ovarian cancer, outcomes remain poor,” senior author of the study William Small Jr., MD, chair, Department of Radiation Oncology, LUHS said in a university press release. “This study provided encouraging preliminary results for the use of RT in women with ovarian cancer.”
The research team reviewed and analyzed medical data from ovarian CCA patients treated between 1989 and 2012. The 56 patients chosen had been histologically diagnosed with pure ovary CCA, were classified as surgical stage I-to-IIIC of the disease and had received adjuvant or neoadjuvant chemotherapy.
The endpoints for the study were set to 3-, 5-, and 8-year cumulative incidence of pelvicrecurrence (CIPR).
Because ovarian CCA is more aggressive than other forms of this disease, patients have higher probabilities of becoming resistant to chemotherapy, thus resulting in a poorer prognosis.
The results showed that the majority of patients had received intravenous carboplatin and paclitaxel, and 10.7% had received pelvic RT (patients suffering from stage I-to-IIC disease) while 89.3% did not. Among the total number of patients, 25% showed initial disease recurrence involving the pelvis, while 10-7% had first recurrence outside of this area.
Furthermore, 3, 5 and 8-year CIPR were 28.2%, 38.5%, and 43.2%, respectively, with no significant differences between the study arm receiving RT (20%, 20%, and 20%) and patients with stages I to IIC who did not receive RT (9.9%, 22.4%, and 30.2%).
However, this study did show a tendency of reduced frequency of tumor recurrence in patients who underwent pelvic RT.
“Pelvic RT after chemotherapy may be more beneficial in treating this form of ovarian cancer compared with other types,” Dr. Small added in the press release. “However, additional research is needed to further evaluate the therapy for this type of ovarian cancer.”