Capecitabine chemoradiation for rectal cancer after curative surgery

Emilio Bajetta, E. Beretta, M. Di Bartolomeo, L. Mariani, F. Valvo, E. Ferrario, M. Mancin, G. Dognini, R. Buzzoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study reports the tolerability and feasibility of capecitabine, an oral fluoropyrimidine, chemoradiation as postoperative treatment. Stage II-III rectal cancer patients received 2 cycles of bolus 5-FU (425 mg/m2) and leucovorin (LV) (20 mg/m2) on days 1-5 q3w followed by oral capecitabine (800 mg/m2 bid) continuously during pelvic radiotherapy (total 50.4 Gy). Two additional cycles of 5-FU/LV were finally administered. Forty-one radically resected patients (median age: 61 years) were enrolled. All patients were evaluable for safety. Grade 3 adverse events included: proctitis (n = 3, 7%), diarrhea (n = 5, 12%), and leukopenia (n = 1, 2%). The overall rate of grade 3 diarrhea and leukopenia was 15% (95% confidence interval, 5-29%). Capecitabine chemoradiation in the adjuvant setting is well tolerated and is convenient to administer. These results support the use and further study of capecitabine chemoradiation in radically resected rectal cancer patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-89
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Chemotherapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2006


  • Adjuvant chemotherapy
  • Capecitabine
  • Radiosensitization
  • Rectal cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Microbiology (medical)


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