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A Retrospective Study to Compare Five Induction Chemotherapy Regimens Prior to Radiotherapy in the Reduction of Regional Lymph Node Size in Patients with Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

Jing Chen, Ji Qi, Bolong Yu, Xiao-Hong Peng, Fan Wang, Jia-Jie Tan, Qi-Qian Chen, Xin-Yu Peng, Fang-Fang Zeng, Xiong Liu

(School of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24: CLR2562-2568

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.906625


BACKGROUND: Combined chemotherapy and radiation therapy are used to treat nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). Previous studies have shown that induction chemotherapy, given before radiotherapy, is beneficial in patients with local lymph node metastases. The aim of this study was to evaluate regional lymph node size in patients with NPC and the efficacy of five induction chemotherapy regimens given before radiotherapy.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between December 2007 and June 2011, 190 patients were included in this study, who had regionally advanced NPC (Stages II–IV). Five induction chemotherapy regimens were given prior to radiation: 98 patients (51.6%) received the TPF regimen (docetaxel, cisplatin, and fluorouracil); 56 patients (29.5%) received PF regimen (cisplatin and fluorouracil); 26 patients (13.7%) received the TP regimen (cisplatin and docetaxel); seven patients (3.7%) received combined nimotuzumab with TPF; three patients (1.6%) received a combination of the novel modified recombinant human endostatin (Endostar) with PF. The length and width of the regional lymph nodes were measured using neck B-mode (high-resolution grey scale) ultrasonography before chemotherapy and on the second day following completion of chemotherapy. Gastrointestinal tract and bone marrow suppression were also monitored during and after chemotherapy.
RESULTS: The TPF chemotherapy induction regimen resulted in an improved early response of lymph node size reduction, compared with the PF and TP chemotherapy induction regimens. The combined use of nimotuzumab with the TPF regimen improved efficacy by 15%. The combined use of Endostar improved the efficacy of the PF regimen by 56% (P<0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: In a retrospective study in patients with NPC, different induction chemotherapy regimens had different effects on lymph node size before radiation therapy.

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