Three Weekly Versus Weekly Cisplatin as Radiosensitizer in Head and Neck Cancer: a Decision Dilemma


Radiation Oncology, Assistant Professor, 2Radiation Oncology, Professor, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana , Ludhian, India


Cisplatin-based concurrent chemoradiation plays an undisputed key role as definitive treatment in unresectable patients with locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma head and neck or as an organ preservation strategy. Treatment with 100 mg/m2 3-weekly cisplatin is considered the standard of care but is often associated with several adverse events. The optimum drug schedule of administration remains to be defined and presently, there is insufficient data limiting conclusions about the relative tolerability of one regimen over the other. This review addresses regarding the optimal dose schedule of cisplatin focusing mainly on three-weekly and weekly dose of cisplatin based concurrent chemoradiotherapy in locally advanced head and neck cancer with an emphasis on mucositis, dermatitis, systemic toxicity, compliance, and treatment interruptions. To derive a definitive conclusion, large prospective randomized trials are needed directly comparing standard 3-weekly cisplatin (100 mg/m2) with weekly schedule (30 - 40 mg/m2) of concurrent cisplatin based chemoradiotherapy in locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma head and neck.