7-year follow up of intra-operative radiotherapy for early breast cancer in a developing country
Scarce radiation resources and an often poor, rural population make single fraction, definitive intra-operative radiation (IORT) ideal for developing countries. From 2002 to 2005 IORT in breast conservation was administered utilizing existing infrastructure in an extremely resource-restricted environment. After tumor excision an applicator was introduced into the tumor bed. An existing Ir 192 after loader delivered a single fraction (21 Gy).Of thirty nine patients treated with 84 months follow-up, one patient suffered local, four regional and three systemic relapse. One patient died of disease, 2 of unrelated causes for a local control rate of 95% and a disease-specific survival of 95%. Cosmetic outcome was perceived excellent. IORT using existing after loaders and a low cost applicator greatly reduced health care resources. This extends breast conservation to indigent patients who cannot adhere to lengthy EBRT protocols. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.