• Marital Status and Overall Survival in Patients with Resectable Pancreatic Cancer: Results of an Ancillary Analysis of NRG Oncology/RTOG 9704

      Reyngold, M.; Winter, K.A.; Regine, W.F. (Wiley-Blackwell, 2019)
      Background: Several registry-based analyses suggested a survival advantage for married versus single patients with pancreatic cancer. The mechanisms underlying the association of marital status and survival are likely multiple and complex and, therefore, may be obscured in analyses generated from large population-based databases. The goal of this research was to characterize this potential association of marital status with outcomes in patients with resected pancreatic cancer who underwent combined modality adjuvant therapy on a prospective clinical trial. Materials and Methods: This is an ancillary analysis of 367 patients with known marital status treated on NRG Oncology/RTOG 97-04. Survival analysis was performed using the Kaplan-Meier method and compared using the log-rank test. Multivariate analysis was performed using the Cox proportional hazards regression model. Results: Of 367 patients, 271 (74%) were married or partnered and 96 (26%) were single. Married or partnered patients were more likely to be male. There was no association between marital status and overall survival (OS) or disease-free survival (DFS) on univariate (hazard ratio [HR], 1.09 and 1.01, respectively) or multivariate analyses (HR, 1.05 and 0.98, respectively). Married or partnered male patients did not have improved survival compared with female or single patients. Conclusion: Ancillary analysis of data from NRG Oncology/RTOG 97-04 demonstrated no association between marital and/or partner status and OS or DFS in patients with resected pancreatic cancer who received adjuvant postoperative chemotherapy followed by concurrent external beam radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Clinical trial identification number. NCT00003216. Implications for Practice: Several population-based studies have shown an epidemiological link between marital status and survival in patients with pancreatic cancer. A better understanding of this association could offer an opportunity to improve outcomes through psychosocial interventions designed to mitigate the negative effects of not being married. Based on the results of this analysis, patients who have undergone a resection and are receiving adjuvant therapy on a clinical trial are unlikely to benefit from such interventions. Further efforts to study the association between marital status and survival should be focused on less selected subgroups of patients with pancreatic cancer.
    • The Use of Radiation Therapy for the Treatment of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: Expert Opinion from the National Cancer Institute Thoracic Malignancy Steering Committee, International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer, and Mesothelioma Applied Re

      Gomez, D.R.; Rimner, A.; Simone, C.B. (Elsevier Inc, 2019)
      Introduction: Detailed guidelines regarding the use of radiation therapy for malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) are currently lacking because of the rarity of the disease, the wide spectrum of clinical presentations, and the paucity of high-level data on individual treatment approaches. Methods: In March 2017, a multidisciplinary meeting of mesothelioma experts was cosponsored by the U.S. National Cancer Institute, International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer Research, and Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. Among the outcomes of this conference was the foundation of detailed, multidisciplinary consensus guidelines. Results: Here we present consensus recommendations on the use of radiation therapy for MPM in three discrete scenarios: (1) hemithoracic radiation therapy to be used before or after extrapleural pneumonectomy; (2) hemithoracic radiation to be used as an adjuvant to lung-sparing procedures (i.e., without pneumonectomy); and (3) palliative radiation therapy for focal symptoms caused by the disease. We discuss appropriate simulation techniques, treatment volumes, dose fractionation regimens, and normal tissue constraints. We also assess the role of particle beam therapy, specifically, proton beam therapy, for MPM. Conclusion: The recommendations provided in this consensus statement should serve as important guidelines for developing future clinical trials of treatment approaches for MPM.