Four-fraction ultra-accelerated minimal breast irradiation in early breast cancer: the initial feasibility results of an institutional experience
Purpose: To evaluate the feasibility, early toxicity, and clinical outcomes of early-breast cancer patients in a single-arm, phase I/II study of an ultra-accelerated, four-fraction schedule of minimal breast irradiation (4f-AMBI) using a multicatheter, minimally-invasive, intraoperative tumor bed implant (MITBI) during breast-conserving surgery (BCS).
Methods and materials: Eligible women aged >40 years with clinically and radiologically confirmed, unifocal invasive or in situ ¿3 cm tumors were considered as potential candidates for MITBI during BCS. After the pathology report, patients who met APBI criteria received ultra-accelerated four-fractions irradiation (6.2 Gy BID x 4fx over 2 days) with perioperative HDR-brachytherapy (PHDRBT). Early complications, toxicity, clinical outcomes, and cosmetic results were analyzed.
Results: Of 89 patients initially implanted, 60(67.4%) were definitively included in the 4f-AMBI-protocol. The median age was 64.4 years; the median CTV was 32.1 cc (6.9-75.4 cc), and the external-V100 was 43.1 cc (12.87-107 cc), representing 5% of the breast tissue irradiated with a median CTV D90 of 6.2 Gy (5.6-6.28 Gy). The entire local treatment (BCS&MITBI-4f-AMBI) was completed at a median of 8 days (4-10 days). The rate of early complications was 11%. There were no major complications. Acute skin-subcutaneous G1 toxicity was reported in 11.7%, and late G1 toxicity on 36.7%. After a median follow-up of 27 months (11-51 months), the local, elsewhere, locoregional and distant-control rates were 100%, 98.3%, 100%, and 100% respectively. The early-cosmetic evaluation was excellent-good in 94.5% of patients evaluated.
Conclusions: Ultra-accelerated, four-fraction, minimal breast irradiation (4f-AMBI) using a minimally-invasive tumor bed implant procedure is safe, dosimetrically feasible, and shows small irradiated volumes. This program provides low toxicity rates and excellent short-term clinical and cosmesis outcomes.