Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy for Primary, Recurrent, and Metastatic Tumors in the Head-and-Neck Region

Farzan Siddiqui, Mehul Patel, Mumtaz Khan, Scott McLean, Jadranka Dragovic, Jian Yue Jin, Benjamin Movsas, Samuel Ryu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Scopus citations


Purpose: To determine the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT), also known as radiosurgery, in patients with head-and-neck cancers. Methods and Materials: Patients with pathologically proven malignant lesions in the head-and-neck region were treated using single-dose SBRT (S-SBRT) or fractionated SBRT (F-SBRT). Radiation doses were either single-fraction 13-18 Gy for S-SBRT or 36-48 Gy in five to eight fractions for F-SBRT. Response evaluation was based on clinical examinations and computed tomography/magnetic resonance imaging scans. Pre- and post-SBRT tumor dimensions were measured in three axes, and tumor volumes were calculated. Response evaluation also was performed using World Health Organization criteria. Results: Fifty-five lesions were treated in 44 patients (25 men, 19 women). There were three groups of patients: those with primary (n = 10), recurrent (n = 21), and metastatic tumors (n = 13). The predominant histologic type was squamous cell carcinoma (n = 33). The majority of lesions were treated using F-SBRT (n = 37). Based on radiographic and clinical assessment, a 77% (complete + partial response) response rate was noted. Percentage of reduction in tumor volume was 52% ± 38% based on follow-up scans in 24 patients. Tumor control rates at 1 year were 83.3% and 60.6% in the primary and recurrent groups, respectively. Median overall survival was 28.7, 6.7, and 5.6 months for the primary, recurrent, and metastatic groups, respectively. Radiation Therapy Oncology Group Grade 1-2 mucositis was noted in all patients treated for oropharyngeal or laryngeal lesions. Conclusions: The SBRT in single or fractionated doses offers a viable treatment option for selected patients with primary, recurrent, and metastatic head-and-neck cancers with functional preservation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1047-1053
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 15 2009


  • Fractionated stereotactic body radiation therapy (F-SBRT)
  • Head-and-neck cancers
  • Reirradiation
  • Single-fraction stereotactic body radiation therapy (S-SBRT)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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