Patients Treated with Higher Daily Radiotherapy Doses at 21st Century Oncology Centers Have Improved Survival Rates that Match Benchmarks from Large Academic Institutions

Januar 22, 2020 09:07 AM Eastern Standard Time

FORT MYERS, Fla., Jan. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — A newly published article in The Journal of Radiation Oncology1 from lead author Dr. Anesa Ahamad, a radiation oncologist at 21st Century Oncology, reports that patients with early-stage voice box cancer who receive radiotherapy over a 5 ½-week period, known as hypofractionation, have improved cure rates when compared patients treated over the conventional period of seven weeks. At 36 months after treatment, 85% of patients who underwent hypofractionation survived as compared to only 66% who received radiation over seven weeks.

The research study was performed by Dr. Ahamad and fellow 21st Century practitioners: Sharon Salenius MPH, executive director of research and statistician; Rudi Ross BS, research analyst, Raj Selvaraj, radiation physicist; and senior author Eduardo Fernandez, radiation oncologist who used data from the institution’s cancer registry. As part of the study, they analyzed 180 patients who were treated between 2000 and 2015 at 59 stand-alone centers affiliated with 21st Century Oncology, the nation’s largest integrated cancer care network.

They also found that there was a shift in the pattern of practice over the 15-year timeframe studied when the use of hypofractionation became more common, increasing from 6% in 2000 to 25% in 2015, mirroring a similar trend reported from centers nationwide.

“Currently, our professional guidelines and standards for treating these patients with a radiotherapy allow a variety of radiotherapy regimens,” Dr. Ahamad said. “Since our results are corroborated by other large studies, we may wish to specify hypofractionation as a preferred schedule We hope that these findings spur consideration of more detailed standards for radiotherapy regimen. Hypofractionation, with a smaller number of daily treatments, is also less costly and more convenient for patients.”

Further, the study found that the cure rates of this cancer among patients treated at 21st Century Oncology centers matched the benchmarks from large academic institutions, showing the relative strength of smaller community-based centers where patients are treated nearer their homes.

“It is very reassuring to know that patients treated at small, free-standing radiotherapy clinics have cure rates that are just as good as large academic centers,” Dr Ahamad said. “Those of us who work in community centers know that great care isn’t about location. It’s about the strength of the team: well-trained physicians, nurses, therapists, dosimetrists, coordinators and administrative staff, as well as powerful updated software and equipment.”

About 21st Century Oncology
21st Century Oncology is the nation’s largest integrated cancer care network. Operating as one dream team in the crusade against cancer, the company carries out its mission with the mindset of “fighting for patients like an army and caring for them like a family.” 21st Century Oncology employs or is affiliated with 1,000 physicians globally to deliver the most advanced, integrated and compassionate cancer care in personal and convenient settings. Headquartered in Fort Myers, FL, 21st Century Oncology operates 164 treatment centers, including 127 centers located in 15 U.S. states. In addition, the company operates 37 centers located in seven countries in Latin America. For more information, please visit https://www.21co.com.

1 Altered Fractionation and Concurrent Chemoradiation for treatment for T2N0M0 Glottic Carcinoma. J Radiat Oncol 2019 Aug 12. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13566-019-00397-9

SOURCE 21st Century Oncology