BARCELONA—Accelerated partial breast irradiation (ABPI) brachytherapy completed in a single week gave at least as good efficacy and safety as other radiotherapy protocols after breast-conserving therapy (BCS) for patients with low-risk breast cancer and brought advantages in terms of symptoms and convenience in a randomized phase three trial(conducted at 16 European medical centers)reported at the 2018 European Society for Radiotherapy & Oncology (ESTRO 37) conference. (OC-0326 QOL After APBI (Multicatheter Brachytherapy) Versus WBI: 5-Year Results, Phase 3 GEC-ESTRO Trial)
“We really have to consider further reducing treatment burden for patients with low-risk breast cancer,” said radiation oncologist Philip Poortmans MD PhD, past ESTRO president, Marie Curie Professor and head of department at Paris Science & Lettres, Institut Curie in Paris commenting on the study findings. “And an excellent approach to this is accelerated partial breast irradiation—for which brachytherapy is an excellent solution,”
First author Rebekka Schäfer MD, Resident Medical Doctor at Würzburg University Hospital in Würzburg, Germany talks with the Audio Journal of Oncology about her study in which APBI with brachytherapy was compared directly to whole breast irradiation in the study and was not inferior in terms of overall survival and local recurrence at five years.
Yolande Lievens MD PhD, head of the department of radiation oncology at Ghent University Hospital in Belgium, said the findings endorsed brachytherapy as an option which improved opportunities for individualizing therapy and limiting the volume of the breast being irradiated.