Curative Radiation Therapy at Time of Progression Under Active Surveillance Compared With Up-Front Radical Radiation Therapy for Prostate Cancer

Alejandro Berlin, Ardalan E. Ahmad, Melvin L.K. Chua, Fabio Y. Moraes, Haiyan Jiang, Maria Komisarenko, Narhari Trimilshina, Hamid Raziee, Ali Hosni, Jure Murgic, Peter Chung, Robert G. Bristow, Antonio Finelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To describe and compare outcomes in men with initially presumed indolent prostate cancer receiving definitive radiation therapy after active surveillance (AS) versus those in a risk-matched cohort undergoing up-front radiation therapy. Methods and Materials: Men prospectively enrolled in an AS program between 1992 and 2014 and subsequently undergoing curative radiation therapy (ie, image guided radiation therapy [IGRT] or low-dose-rate brachytherapy [LDR-BT]) were identified. Biochemical relapse-free rate (bRFR), metastasis-free rate (mFR), and overall survival (OS) were compared against a cohort of men treated up front, matched by age, clinical prognostic indices (risk group, prostate-specific antigen, cT category, Gleason score, percentage of involved biopsy cores), and radiation therapy modality. Results: Of 1070 patients in the AS registry, 200 underwent definitive radiation therapy (143 IGRT and 57 LDR-BT) after a median of 32.9 (interquartile range [IQR] 20.6-59.8) months on surveillance. Main reasons for treatment were grade and volume upgrading (57.5% and 26%, respectively). Median follow-up after radiation therapy was 4.9 (IQR 3.1-7.5) years. At 5 years the bRFR, mFR, and OS were, respectively, 97%, 99%, and 98.5%. No patient died of prostate cancer. Adequate risk-matching was confirmed in an independent cohort comprising 359 patients receiving up-front IGRT (71%) or LDR-BT (29%) and followed for a median of 9 (IQR 3.1-7.5) years. There was no difference in the disease-specific outcomes (bRFR, mFR) between the 2 cohorts (Gray's P value of .257 and .934, respectively). In multivariate analyses, timing of radical radiation therapy (deferred vs up-front) was not correlated to biochemical relapse or metastases occurrence. Conclusions: Curative-intent radiation therapy (ie, dose-escalated IGRT or LDR-BT) after a period of AS renders excellent oncologic outcomes at 5 years. Deferring radical therapy after a period of AS does not seem to result in inferior oncologic outcomes compared with patients with similar risk characteristics undergoing up-front treatment.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number3
Early online date1 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Manchester Cancer Research Centre


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