Purpose: To establish the safety and toxicity profile of daily gefitinib with radiation alone or with concurrent chemoradiotherapy in previously untreated patients with locally advanced squamous cell head and neck cancer (LAHNC). Patients and Methods: Patients with intermediate-stage LAHNC were treated with concomitant boost radiation (RT) alone with escalating doses of daily gefitinib (250 or 500 mg; cohort I). Once a safety profile was determined with RT alone, patients with high-risk disease were then treated with daily gefitinib (250 or 500 mg), weekly cisplatin (CDDP; 30 mg/m2), and once-daily RT (cohort II). Patients also received post-RT gefitinib at 250 mg daily for a period of up to 2 years. Results: Twenty-three patients were enrolled and assessable for toxicity. No dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) were observed in patients treated in cohort I at either 250 or 500 mg of gefitinib daily with concomitant boost RT to 72 Gy. In patients receiving chemoradiotherapy and gefitinib (cohort II), DLTs included one grade 4 diarrhea and one grade 4 neutropenic fever. Fifteen patients started maintenance gefitinib, and eight (53%) experienced grade 1 to 2 acne-like skin rash and diarrhea, but no grade 3 or 4 toxicity occurred. Conclusion: Gefitinib (250 or 500 mg daily) was well tolerated with concomitant boost RT or concurrent chemoradiotherapy with weekly CDDP. Protracted administration of gefitinib for up to 2 years at 250 mg daily was also tolerated well.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research