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Squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus ranks as the most common cause of cancer incidence and mortality in males and the second most common in females. Surgery alone is associated with poor long-term survival. Neoadjuvant chemoradiation and perioperative chemotherapy without radiation have been tried to improve survival rates. We retrospectively evaluated the neoadjuvant chemotherapy in forty-eight patients with non-metastatic, non-cervical squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus with a docetaxel-based three-drug regimen to improve complete pathological response rates. The median age of presentation was 52 years, with male preponderance. All the patients received three cycles of docetaxel-cisplatin-fluorouracil-based chemotherapy. A complete pathological response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy was seen in 8 patients (17%). Rates of grade 3 hematological toxicities were seen in 12% of patients, with no observed grade 4 toxicity. The most common non-hematological toxicity was grade 3 alopecia (seen in 40%) and grade 2 nausea/vomiting in 8% of patients. At a median follow-up of 26.5 months, 2-year survival for the patients receiving chemotherapy and surgery is 66%. Preoperative chemotherapy with a taxane-based triple-drug regimen is a reasonable approach in squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus, associated with improvement in complete pathological response rates, increases complete resection rates, with manageable toxicity. © 2021. The Author(s).


Partha Sarathi Roy, Gaurav Kumar, Sreya Mallik, Satya Sadhan Sarangi, Bhargab Jyoti Saikia, Munlima Hazarika, Abhijit Talukdar. Clinico-epidemiological profile and treatment outcomes in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus following docetaxel-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy: experience from a cancer care center in Northeast India. Journal of the Egyptian National Cancer Institute. 2021 Oct 21;33(1):35

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PMID: 34674048

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