Background/purpose: The incidence rate of oral and pharyngeal cancers in Taiwan has increased gradually over the past few decades. The standard treatment strategy for oral and pharyngeal cancers includes surgery or radiotherapy, with concurrent chemotherapy in certain types of tumors. Unfortunately, in-field recurrence is sometimes inexorable. Furthermore, re-irradiation of the recurrence site may cause severe complications due to the tolerance of normal tissue to radiation therapy. One fatal complication is carotid blowout syndrome (CBS). Boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) is a new modality of radiation therapy, which is also mentioned as targeted radiotherapy. It is a feasible treatment that has the potential to spare normal tissue from being damaged by irradiation while simultaneously treating the primary tumor. In this presentation, we will share our experience with BNCT in treating recurrent head and neck cancers, as well as the prevention and management of CBS. Materials and methods: We evaluated 4 patients with head and neck cancers treated by BNCT in Taiwan. All patients had undergone surgery previously and had received postoperative concurrent chemoradiotherapy. Results: The 4 patients in this study were diagnosed with head and neck malignancies. The median follow-up period after the first course of BNCT was 15.1 months. After BNCT, 2 patients developed impending CBS, and 1 of them died. The remaining 3 patients survived until the last date of follow-up. Conclusion: Pre-BNCT carotid artery evaluation through computed tomography angiography and early intervention if necessary is crucial when treating patients with recurrent head and neck cancers by BNCT.
- Boron neutron capture therapy
- Carotid blowout syndrome
- Head and neck cancer
- Quality of life
ASJC Scopus subject areas