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Indian Journal of Medical and Paediatric Oncology
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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 4-7

Comparison of vinorelbine with cisplatin in concomitant chemoradiotherapy in head and neck carcinoma

1 Department of Radiotherapy, Chittaranjan National Cancer Institute, Kolkata, India
2 Department of Radiotherapy, Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Kolkata, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-5851.68845

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Aim: Head and neck cancer is one of the most commonly occurring malignancies in the world. In India, the most commonly occurring head and neck cancers are those of the oral cavity and the pharynx. The majority of these cancers present with stage III/IV disease. Surgery and radiation therapy are the main treatment modalities. Concomitant chemoradiation is being investigated with the goal of improved local control that translates into improved survival. In this background, we have started this prospective randomized trial to ascertain the dose, schedule and sequence of therapy and to note whether Vinorelbine as radiosensitizer is equally effective as Cisplatin, comparing compliance, local control and toxicity. Patients and Methods: Forty patients of advanced head and neck cancer were randomized into two arms. Arm A received weekly injection Cisplatin 40mg/m 2 along with radiation. Arm B received weekly injection of Vinorelbine 6mg/m 2 along with radiation. Radiotherapy was delivered at a dose of 6,600-7,000 Gy in conventional fractionation in a telecobalt machine. Results: The complete response (CR) rate was higher in arm B (90%) than in arm A (70%). Major toxicities included neutropenia, anemia, mucositis and nausea. Conclusion: Concomitant chemoradiation with Vinorelbine produced more CR than chemoradiation with Cisplatin in advanced head and neck cancer. Toxicities were more in the Cisplatin arm, but they were manageable. Although a majority of the study was performed using Cisplatin as the radiosensitizer, Vinorelbine can be recommended as radiosensitizer in advanced head and neck malignancy.

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