International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics 2009-11-15
Effectiveness and safety of spot scanning proton radiation therapy for chordomas and chondrosarcomas of the skull base: first long-term report.   
To evaluate effectiveness and safety of spot-scanning-based proton radiotherapy (PT) in skull-base chordomas and chondrosarcomas.
Between October 1998 and November 2005, 64 patients with skull-base chordomas (n = 42) and chondrosarcomas (n = 22) were treated at Paul Scherrer Institute with PT using spot-scanning technique. Median total dose for chordomas was 73.5 Gy(RBE) and 68.4 Gy(RBE) for chondrosarcomas at 1.8-2.0 Gy(RBE) dose per fraction. Local control (LC), disease specific survival (DSS), and overall survival (OS) rates were calculated. Toxicity was assessed according to CTCAE, v. 3.0.
Mean follow-up period was 38 months (range, 14-92 months). Five patients with chordoma and one patient with chondrosarcoma experienced local recurrence. Actuarial 5-year LC rates were 81% for chordomas and 94% for chondrosarcomas. Brainstem compression at the time of PT (p = 0.007) and gross tumor volume >25 mL (p = 0.03) were associated with lower LC rates. Five years rates of DSS and OS were 81% and 62% for chordomas and 100% and 91% for chondrosarcomas, respectively. High-grade late toxicity consisted of one patient with Grade 3 and one patient with Grade 4 unilateral optic neuropathy, and two patients with Grade 3 central nervous system necrosis. No patient experienced brainstem toxicity. Actuarial 5-year freedom from high-grade toxicity was 94%.
Our data indicate safety and efficacy of spot-scanning based PT for skull-base chordomas and chondrosarcomas. With target definition, dose prescription and normal organ tolerance levels similar to passive-scattering based PT series, complication-free, tumor control and survival rates are at present comparable.

Related Questions

If proton therapy is not available would you consider radiosurgery? How would your management differ if residual disease is present?