Patients with operable stage I non-small cell lung cancer could achieve better overall survival rates if treated with Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy, according to new research.
The findings, published today in The Lancet Oncology, are from the first randomized clinical trials comparing SABR and surgery.
“For the first time, we can say that the two therapies are at least equally effective, and that SABR appears to be better tolerated and might lead to better survival outcomes for these patients,” said the first author and principal investigator Joe Y. Chang, M.D., Ph.D., professor, Radiation Oncology. “Stereotactic radiation treatment is a relatively new approach for operable early stage lung cancer, while surgery has been the standard for a century. This study can give physicians confidence to consider a non-invasive option.”
The researchers analyzed overall survival, recurrences and toxicity in 58 patients. Estimated three-year survival rates were 79 percent in the surgery group and 95 percent in the SABR group, while recurrence-free survival rates at three years were 80 percent and 86 percent, respectively. Six patients in the surgery group died versus one death within the SABR group. None of the patients treated with SABR had high-grade toxicity.