The role of vaginal cuff brachytherapy in endometrial cancer Journal Article

Authors: Harkenrider, M. M.; Block, A. M.; Siddiqui, Z. A.; Small, W., Jr
Article Title: The role of vaginal cuff brachytherapy in endometrial cancer
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this article is to review the data, rationale, and recommendations of vaginal brachytherapy (VBT) in the post-operative treatment of endometrial cancer patients. METHODS: The authors performed a thorough review of the medical literature regarding the use of adjuvant VBT in the treatment of endometrial cancer. Relevant data are presented in this review. Additionally, personal and institutional practices from the authors are incorporated where relevant. RESULTS: VBT for the adjuvant treatment of early stage endometrial cancer patients results in a low rate of recurrence (0-3.1%) with very low rates of toxicity. PORTEC-2 supports the use of adjuvant VBT versus external beam radiotherapy specifically for high-intermediate risk endometrial cancer patients. VBT has low rates of acute and chronic gastrointestinal and genitourinary toxicity and very low rates of second primary malignancy. The primary toxicity of VBT is vaginal atrophy and stenosis with controversy regarding the use of vaginal dilators for prevention. Data support that patients prefer to be involved in the decision making process for their adjuvant therapy, and patients have a lower minimal desired benefit of adjuvant VBT than do physicians. Guidelines exist from the American Brachytherapy Society and American Society of Radiation Oncology with support from the Society for Gynecologic Oncologists regarding the use of adjuvant VBT. CONCLUSIONS: VBT decreases the risk of recurrence with minimal toxicity in the adjuvant treatment of endometrial cancer. Adjuvant therapy should be discussed in a multi-disciplinary setting with detailed counseling of the risks and benefits with the patient so that she ultimately makes an informed decision regarding her adjuvant therapy.
Journal Title: Gynecologic oncology
Volume: 136
Issue: 2
ISSN: 1095-6859; 0090-8258
Publisher: Elsevier Inc  
Date Published: 2014
Start Page: 365
End Page: 372
Language: ENG
Notes: LR: 20150113; CI: Copyright (c) 2014; JID: 0365304; OTO: NOTNLM; 2014/11/02 [received]; 2014/12/23 [revised]; 2014/12/26 [accepted]; aheadofprint