Combined chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery for epithelial cancer of the anal canal

Academic Article


  • Combined chemotherapy and radiation therapy have been reported to produce a high incidence of complete regression of epithelial cancer of the anal canal, resulting in prolonged disease‐free survival. This modality has been advocated as an alternative to abdominoperineal resection as a primary treatment for this disease. Our group treated 19 patients between 1979 and 1985. Treatment included two infusions of 5‐fluorouracil (1000 mg/m2/24 hours), one dose of mitomycin C (15 mg/m2), and simultaneous whole‐pelvis radiation (3000 rad). The complete response rate was 88%. Three patients had anal cancer incompletely controlled by that therapy. They underwent abdominoperineal resections and are alive without disease at 10, 39, and 43 months, respectively. Actuarial disease‐free survival at 40 months was 87.5 ± 8.8 (% ± standard error of the mean [SEM]). Complications included gastrointestinal, hematologic, and cutaneous toxicity. These results confirmed a high complete response rate to this therapy. Local treatment failures may occur, but these may be salvaged with abdominoperineal resection. Copyright © 1986 American Cancer Society
  • Published In

  • Cancer  Journal
  • Author List

  • Meeker WR; Sickle‐Santanello BJ; Philpott G; Kenady D; Bland KI; Hill GH; Popp MB
  • Start Page

  • 525
  • End Page

  • 529
  • Volume

  • 57
  • Issue

  • 3