Electrochemotherapy as palliative treatment in patients with advanced head and neck tumours: Outcome analysis in 93 patients treated in a single institution

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Abstract

Purpose: To describe outcomes of Electrochemotherapy as palliative treatment in patients with advanced head and neck (H&N) tumours. Methods: Ninety-three patients (120 treatment sessions) with H&N recurrent and/or metastatic neoplasm were treated. Treatment response was assessed 4 weeks after ECT with clinical examination and two months after the first evaluation with a CT scan of the H&N for deep lesions evaluation. The grade of bleeding and pain before, at the end of treatment and one week after ECT were evaluated. Results: Five percent of complete responses, 40% of partial responses were registered. Disease progression was seen in 20% of patients after the first ECT procedure, the remaining 34% of patients experienced stable disease. A good control of pain and bleeding was obtained, especially in patients with moderate symptoms before the treatment. No toxicities related to ECT were seen. Conclusions: ECT is an interesting antitumoral therapy in advanced chemo and radio-refractory H&N neoplasms. ECT is able to reduce frequent symptoms, such as pain and bleeding, improving quality of life without damage to healthy tissue and with limited side effects. Moreover, ECT reduces hospitalization time and may contribute to an overall reduction in healthcare costs associated with advanced H&N cancers care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-84
Number of pages8
JournalOral Oncology
Volume92
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2019

Keywords

  • Advanced head and neck cancer
  • Bleeding control
  • Electrochemotherapy
  • Pain
  • Palliative setting
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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