Purpose: To evaluate the therapeutic effect of delivering regional hyperthermia (HT) plus chemoradiotherapy (CRT) in patients suffering from locally advanced unresectable pancreatic cancer (LAPC).
Methods: Between January 2000 and December 2008, 68 patients affected by primary (56/68) or recurrent (12/68) LAPC were treated either with CRT alone or CRT plus HT. Radiotherapy (RT) consisted of 3D conformal irradiation of tumor and regional lymph nodes (dose ranged from 30 Gy/10 fractions to 66 Gy/33 fractions). Chemotherapy (CT) consisted of gemcitabine (GEM) alone or in association with either oxaliplatin, cisplatin, or 5-FU. HT was delivered twice a week, concomitant with RT.
Results: In the current study, 60 of the original 68 patients were included. Median overall survival (OS) was 15 months in the HT group versus 11 months in the control group (log-rank test: p = 0.025). HT did not increase CRT toxicity.
Conclusion: HT can be added safely to CRT in LAPC, thus, resulting in slightly prolonged survival in certain cases.