role of Photodynamic therapy in the Palliation of obstructing esophageal cancer
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Background/Aims: The aim of this non-randomized study was to determine the role of photodynamic therapy (PDT) in a multimodal approach for the palliation of advanced esophageal carcinoma. Methods: Twenty consecutive patients with obstructing esophageal cancer were enrolled in this study. Each subject had dysphagia, and nine could not swallow fluid. External beam radiotherapy or a self-expandable metal stent was used following PDT for dysphagia due to recurrence of the malignancy. Results: At 4 weeks post-PDT, a significant improvement in the dysphagia score was observed in 90% of patients, from 2.75 ± 0.91 to 1.05 ± 0.83 (p<0.05). Patients with recurrent dysphagia underwent stent insertion at an average of 63 days (range, 37 to 90). The rate of major complications was 10%. Two esophageal strictures occurred, which were treated by placement of a modified expandable stent across the stricture. The median survival in these cases was 7.0 ± 0.6 months. One patient that was treated with PDT and radiotherapy is alive and showed a complete tumor response. Conclusions: PDT as a multimodality treatment is safe and effective for relieving malignant esophageal obstruction with minimal complications.
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