Specialized Radiation "Paints" a Safer Picture for Anal Cancer

Serious side effects were reduced when research radiologists used a special technique to target the most radiation on anal cancer tumors, while sparing nearby normal tissue. Reported at the recent 2011 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium in San Francisco, intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) did not reduce overall side effects during chemotherapy and radiation treatment, but it did cut…  Read More

Clinical Trial Open: Tomotherapy for Limited Cancer Mets

Cancer patients with only a few tumors that have spread to other parts of their bodies (metastases) will be part of a clinical trial to test precisely focused, high-dose radiation treatment called helical tomotherapy. Researchers at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center want to know if helical tomography, focused on metastatic tumors, can destroy them…  Read More

Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy for Liver Mets Safe

An early clinical trial of focused radiation therapy for liver metastases appeared to be safe without causing liver disease. Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) delivers high doses of radiation to a carefully targeted area of the body.  Its goal is to destroy cancer cells while leaving healthy tissue unharmed. Radiation oncologists at Princesss Margaret Hospital at the…  Read More

Response to Radiation Treatment Before Surgery Improves Rectal Cancer Survival

Patients whose tumors shrink in response to radiation therapy before surgery for rectal cancer have both improved overall survival and improved disease-free survival.  However, even patients who responded to presurgical radiation did not reach survival rates for stage I rectal cancer patients treated with surgery alone.

Whole Brain Radiation of Brain Mets Leads to Memory Problems

Patients whose cancers have spread to the brain experience more learning and memory problems when radiation to their whole brain follows more targeted radiotherapy. Study results presented at the 2008 American Society for Radiation Therapy and Oncology annual meeting in Boston found that whole brain radiation after radiosurgery doubled the risk of cognitive problems.

Adjuvant Treatment Does Not Have Negative Impact on Elderly Quality of Life

Colon and rectal cancer patients 75 years old and older who are treated with chemotherapy or radiation don’t report any poorer quality of life than older patients who don’t have such therapy.  Patients who had chemotherapy said that their physical functioning was better than that reported by those who didn’t receive chemo.