Low-dose splenic irradiation in symptomatic congestive splenomegaly: report of five cases with literature data

Radiat Oncol. 2014 Mar 27:9:86. doi: 10.1186/1748-717X-9-86.


Background: To show effectiveness of low-dose splenic irradiation in symptomatic congestive splenomegaly.

Methods: Five patients were referred to our department for symptomatic congestive splenomegaly within three years. Primary diseases were autoimmune hepatitis with liver cirrhosis (n=2), cystic fibrosis (n=1), granulomatous liver disease (n=1) and Werlhof disease with liver cirrhosis (n=1). Mean age was 54 years (range: 36-67). Patients received splenic irradiation with a total dose of 3 Gy (single dose: 0.5 Gy). One patient was re-irradiated after long-term failure with the same treatment schedule.

Results: In four patients long term relief of splenic pain could be observed during the follow-up time of median 20 (range: 2-36) months. Four patients showed haematological response after irradiation with an increase of erythrocytes, leucocytes and/or platelets. A slightly decrease in spleen size was found in two patients.

Conclusions: Low-dose splenic irradiation in symptomatic congestive splenomegaly is feasible and perhaps as effective as in lympho-and myeloproliferative malignancies regarding pain relief and haematological response.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Portal / complications
  • Hypertension, Portal / radiotherapy*
  • Idiopathic Noncirrhotic Portal Hypertension
  • Liver Cirrhosis / complications
  • Liver Cirrhosis / radiotherapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / etiology
  • Pain / radiotherapy
  • Pancytopenia / complications
  • Pancytopenia / radiotherapy*
  • Radiotherapy Dosage
  • Spleen / pathology
  • Splenomegaly / complications
  • Splenomegaly / radiotherapy*
  • Treatment Outcome