Results from a multi-center review of patients 80 years or older with early stage, inoperable lung cancer who underwent definitive lung stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) indicated treatment was well-tolerated and patients experienced excellent 5-year cause-specific survival (CSS). These results were presented at the 2017 Multidisciplinary Thoracic Cancers Symposium in San Francisco, California.1

Typical treatment for early-stage lung cancer is surgery, though many elderly patients are ineligible. In these patients, the optimal curative therapy is SBRT.

This study retrospectively analyzed data from 58 consecutive patients 80 years or older who underwent definitive lung SBRT between 2010 and 2015.

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Patients were diagnosed with early stage lung cancers. Forty percent of patients had adenocarcinomas, 29% had squamous cell carcinomas, and 31% did not receive a biopsy.

Two years after definitive SBRT, survival rates were 73% for CSS and 57% for overall survival. Patients who were not active smokers had higher rates of CSS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.14; P = .03). Older patients or patients with previous lung cancers had lower rates of CSS.

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The 2-year estimate of local control was 84.5%.

In total, 34.5% of patients had pneumonitis of any grade, and 2 patients had grade 3 or worse pneumonitis.


  1. Cassidy III RJ, Patel PR, Zhang X, et al. Stereotactic body radiotherapy for early stage non-small cell lung cancer in patients 80 years and older: a multi-center analysis. Paper presented at: 2017 Multidisciplinary Thoracic Cancers Symposium; March 16-18, 2017; San Francisco, CA.