Effect of chemoradiotherapy and neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy in resectable pancreatic cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis
AIM To explore whether preoperative chemoradiation therapy improves survival of patients with pancreatic cancer undergoing resectional surgery. METHODS Forty-seven patients with a malignant pancreatic tumor localized in the head or uncinate process of the pancreas underwent radical pancreatico-duodenectomy. Twenty-two received chemoradiation therapy (gemcitabine and radiation dose 50.4 Gy) before surgery (CRR) and 25 patients underwent surgery only (RO). The study was non-randomised. Patients were identified from a prospective database. RESULTS The median survival time was 30.2 mo in the CRR group and 35.9 mo in the RO group. No statistically significant differences were found in subclasses according to lymph node involvement, TNM stages, tumor size, or perineural invasion. The one, three and five year survival rates were 81%, 33% and 33%, respectively, in the CRR group and 72%, 47% and 23%, respectively, in the RO group. In ductal adenocarcinoma, the median survival time was 27 mo in the CRR group and 20 mo in the RO group. No statistically significant differences were found in the above subclasses. The one, three and five year survival rates were 79%, 21% and 21%, respectively, in the CRR group and 64%, 50% and 14%, respectively, in the RO group. The overall hospital mortality rate was 2%. The morbidity rate was 45% in the CRR group and 32% (NS) in the RO group. CONCLUSION Major multicenter randomized studies are needed to conclusively assess the impact of neoadjuvant treatment in the management of pancreatic cancer.