Combination Chemotherapy Plus Radiation Therapy in Treating Patients With Advanced Head and Neck Cancer

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Basic Trial Information

PhaseTypeStatusAgeSponsorProtocol IDs
Phase IIITreatmentClosed18 to 70OtherEORTC-24971
RP-56976-V-323, NCT00003888

Trial Description


RATIONALE: Drugs used in chemotherapy use different ways to stop tumor cells from dividing so they stop growing or die. Radiation therapy uses high-energy x-rays to damage tumor cells. Combining more than one drug and combining chemotherapy with radiation therapy may kill more tumor cells. It is not yet known which regimen of combination chemotherapy is more effective for advanced head and neck cancer.

PURPOSE: Randomized phase III trial to compare the effectiveness of two regimens of combination chemotherapy plus radiation therapy in treating patients who have advanced head and neck cancer.

Further Study Information

OBJECTIVES: I. Compare the progression free survival of patients with locally advanced, inoperable squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck treated with cisplatin plus fluorouracil with or without docetaxel as a neoadjuvant to radiotherapy. II. Compare the response rate, response duration, toxicity, local symptoms, and time to disease progression of these treatment regimens in this patient population. III. Evaluate the quality of life in these patients.

OUTLINE: This is a randomized, multicenter study. Patients are stratified according to primary tumor site (oral cavity vs oropharynx vs hypopharynx vs larynx) and institution. Patients are randomized to one of two treatment arms. Arm I: Patients receive docetaxel IV over 1 hour, immediately followed by cisplatin IV over 1 hour on day 1 and fluorouracil (5-FU) IV as a continuous infusion on days 1-5. Arm II: Patients receive cisplatin IV over 1 hour on day 1 followed by 5-FU IV as a continuous infusion on days 1-5. Treatment continues every 3 weeks for 4 courses in the absence of disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. Patients receive radiotherapy following chemotherapy within 3-6 weeks of last course. Radiotherapy is administered 5 days a week for up to 7 weeks. Quality of life is assessed before treatment, at courses 2 and 4, and at 6 and 9 months. Patients are followed every 3 months for the first 2 years and then every 6 months until death.

PROJECTED ACCRUAL: A total of 348 patients will be accrued for this study within 24 months.

Eligibility Criteria

DISEASE CHARACTERISTICS: Histologically or cytologically proven locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck Stage III or IV without distant metastases Unresectable Primary tumor sites: Oral cavity Oropharynx Hypopharynx Larynx Must have at least one measurable lesion

PATIENT CHARACTERISTICS: Age: 18 to 70 Performance status: WHO 0-1 Life expectancy: Not specified Hematopoietic: Absolute neutrophil count at least 2,000/mm3 Platelet count at least 100,000/mm3 Hemoglobin at least 10 g/dL Hepatic: Bilirubin no greater than upper limit of normal (ULN) SGOT and SGPT no greater than 2.5 times ULN Alkaline phosphatase no greater than 5 times ULN No SGOT and SGPT greater than 1.5 times ULN AND alkaline phosphatase greater than 2.5 times ULN Renal: Creatinine no greater than 1.4 mg/dL OR Creatinine clearance at least 60 mL/min Cardiovascular: At least 6 months since prior myocardial infarction No unstable, treated cardiac disease Pulmonary: At least one year since prior hospitalization for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Neurologic: No neurologic or psychiatric disorders (e.g., dementia or seizures) No concurrent peripheral neuropathy greater than grade 1 Other: No active uncontrolled infection No active peptic ulcer No alteration in hearing At least 5 years since any other neoplastic disease except curatively treated basal or squamous cell skin cancer, carcinoma in situ of the cervix, or other cancer curatively treated by surgery Not pregnant or nursing Fertile patients must use effective contraception No other psychological, familial, sociological, or geographical condition that would prevent compliance

PRIOR CONCURRENT THERAPY: Biologic therapy: No primary prophylactic colony stimulating factors during the first course of therapy Chemotherapy: No prior or concurrent chemotherapy Endocrine therapy: At least 3 weeks since prior corticosteroid No chronic corticosteroid therapy (greater than 3 months) Radiotherapy: No prior radiotherapy Surgery: No prior surgery for this cancer Other: At least 30 days since prior treatment in a clinical trial No concurrent use of drugs that interact with fluorouracil (e.g., cimetidine, allopurinol, folic acid or leucovorin calcium) No other concurrent investigational drugs or anticancer treatment

Trial Contact Information

Trial Lead Organizations/Sponsors

European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer

    Jan Baptist Vermorken, Study Chair

    Link to the current record.
    NLM Identifier NCT00003888 processed this data on April 09, 2015

    Note: Information about this trial is from the database. The versions designated for health professionals and patients contain the same text. Minor changes may be made to the record to standardize the names of study sponsors, sites, and contacts. only lists sites that are recruiting patients for active trials, whereas lists all sites for all trials. Questions and comments regarding the presented information should be directed to