Vornhulz, M., Anton, S., Eross, B., Szakacs, Z., Hegyi, P., Regel, I., Belka, C., Niyazi, M., Mayerle, J., and Beyer, G. (2022). Radiat Oncol 17, 108. doi: 10.1186/s13014-022-02076-5
Introduction: Up to 30% of pancreatic cancer patients initially present locally advanced (LAPC). Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) may be an additional palliative treatment option when curative resection is no longer achievable. Our systematic review aimed to assess the effect of SBRT on the quality of life in LAPC.
Methods: We searched five databases until June 29th, 2021, for original articles that reported on SBRT for histologically proven LAPC in adults. Data were extracted on study characteristics, SBRT and additional therapy regimen, pain, biliary complications, nutrition, quality of life and other patient-reported outcomes. Statistical analyses were performed for population and survival data.
Results: 11 case series studies comprising 292 patients with a median age of 66 (range 34-89) years were included in the final analysis. The weighted average BED2;10 (radiation biologically effective dose, equivalent dose in 2 Gy fractions) was 54 Gy, delivered in 3 to 6 fractions. The individual studies used different scales and endpoints, not allowing a meta-analysis. Pain generally appeared to be improved by SBRT. SBRT significantly reduced jaundice. Local control was achieved in 71.7% of patients. Weight loss and nausea also tended to improve after SBRT.
Conclusion: SBRT of locally advanced irresectable pancreatic cancer is a promising approach for achieving local control and improving the quality of life. However, randomized controlled trials with larger cohorts are needed to assess the value of SBRT in pancreatic cancer therapy.