Hypofractionation: less is more?
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One third of patients with bladder cancer present with muscle invasive bladder cancer (MIBC) which has a poor prognosis. International guidelines for the management of MIBC recommend radical cystectomy or bladder-preserving treatment based on radical radiotherapy with a form of radiosensitisation. In the UK, both conventional fractionation with 64 Gy in 32 fractions and hypofractionation with 55 Gy in 20 fractions are standard of care options with the choice varying between centres. A meta-analysis of individual patients with locally advanced bladder cancer from two UK multicentre phase 3 trials was published recently. This study evaluated the non-inferiority of a hypofractionated schedule compared to a conventional regime. This analysis confirmed the non-inferiority of the hypofractionated regimen, and noted superior locoregional control. We discuss the relevance of these findings to current practice while considering the radiobiology of hypofractionation, the role of systemic therapies and radiosensitisation, as well as the socioeconomic benefits.
Clinical Trials & Statistics Unit
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Oncotarget, 2021, 12 (17), pp. 1729 - 1733