Context. Half-body irradiation (HBI) is the fastest and most effective tool against uncontrolled pain from widespread bone metastases but is somewhat toxic. Objectives: To assess the feasibility of lower HBI with helical tomotherapy in patients with metastatic breast cancer in terms of acute toxicity and delay in chemotherapy administration. Methods. Thirteen breast cancer patients with multiple painful bone metastases to the lower half of the body were enrolled in this prospective trial. Eight patients were receiving chemotherapy. Target volume included all bones from the L3-L4 interface to the femoral shafts. Radiation consisted of 8 Gy in one fraction, delivered with helical tomotherapy. Patients were premedicated only with oral steroids. Pain intensity was scored using the Numeric Rating Scale from 0 to 10. Toxicity was scored using the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events, version 3.0. Quality of life was scored with the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire-Core 30, before and 21 days after the radiation course. This trial was approved by the local review board. Results. Median follow-up was at seven months (range 2-12 months). All but two patients had pain relief in the radiated field. Six patients stopped their analgesic drug consumption. Toxicity was acceptable: two Grade 3 hematologic toxicities were registered (anemia and leukopenia). Grade 1-2 toxicities were hematologic = 13, fever = 3, nausea = 2, and diarrhea = 1. Three of the eight patients had a delay in chemotherapy administration because of leukopenia or anemia. Twelve patients answered to European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire-Core 30, and an improved quality of life was documented in eight cases. Conclusion. Lower HBI delivered with helical tomotherapy resulted in a well-tolerated regimen, without significant delay in chemotherapy schedule. © 2014 U.S. Cancer Pain Relief Committee.
Furlan, C., Trovo, M., Drigo, A., Capra, E., & Trovo, M. G. (2014). Half-body irradiation with tomotherapy for pain palliation in metastatic breast cancer. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, 47(1), 174–180. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2013.02.022