Reducing biochemical recurrence rates in EBRT-treated prostate cancer patients: the influence of dose and dose per fraction.
In the last 15-20 years, technological improvements in radiation treatment planning and delivery have allowed radiation oncologists to increase the total dose to the prostate gland. The results of four randomized trials using conventional daily doses (1.8-2 Gy) demonstrate that higher total doses lead to lower rates of biochemical recurrence, but with a modest increase in late toxicity. Preclinical data suggest that treatment schedules relying on fewer, larger daily fractions of radiotherapy (hypofractionation) may increase the therapeutic ratio. Early results from several uncontrolled trials indicate that schedules that rely on larger daily doses are associated with low toxicity, provided some form of daily target localization and sophisticated treatment delivery are used. The results of several randomized trials that compare hypofractionated regimens to conventionally fractionated regimens will be available in the next 5-10 years.
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