Assessing adverse events of postprostatectomy radiation therapy for prostate cancer: Evaluation of outcomes in the regione Emilia-Romagna, Italy

  • Showalter T
  • Hegarty S
  • Rabinowitz C
 et al. 
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Abstract

Purpose Although the likelihood of radiation-related adverse events influences treatment decisions regarding radiation therapy after prostatectomy for eligible patients, the data available to inform decisions are limited. This study was designed to evaluate the genitourinary, gastrointestinal, and sexual adverse events associated with postprostatectomy radiation therapy and to assess the influence of radiation timing on the risk of adverse events. Methods The Regione Emilia-Romagna Italian Longitudinal Health Care Utilization Database was queried to identify a cohort of men who received radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer during 2003 to 2009, including patients who received postprostatectomy radiation therapy. Patients with prior radiation therapy were excluded. Outcome measures were genitourinary, gastrointestinal, and sexual adverse events after prostatectomy. Rates of adverse events were compared between the cohorts who did and did not receive postoperative radiation therapy. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were developed for each class of adverse events, including models with radiation therapy as a time-varying covariate. Results A total of 9876 men were included in the analyses: 2176 (22%) who received radiation therapy and 7700 (78%) treated with prostatectomy alone. In multivariable Cox proportional hazards models, the additional exposure to radiation therapy after prostatectomy was associated with increased rates of gastrointestinal (rate ratio [RR] 1.81; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.44-2.27; P.1 for all outcomes). Conclusion Radiation therapy after prostatectomy is associated with an increase in gastrointestinal and genitourinary adverse events. However, the timing of radiation therapy did not influence the risk of radiation therapy-associated adverse events in this cohort, which contradicts the commonly held clinical tenet that delaying radiation therapy reduces the risk of adverse events.

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