Paper Information

Journal:   INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF RADIATION RESEARCH   2003 , Volume 1 , Number 2; Page(s) 63 To 78.
 
Paper: 

TREATMENT OF RADIATION-INDUCED NORMAL TISSUE LESIONS

 
 
Author(s):  REZVANI M.*
 
* RESEARCH INSTITUTE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD, CHURCHILL HOSPITAL, OXFORD OX3 7LJ, UK.
 
Abstract: 

Normal tissue damage is the most important limiting factor in radiotherapy. It must be possible, at least theoretically, to eradicate a localized tumour if a large enough dose of radiation could be delivered to tumour, however, practically, there is always the danger of damaging normal tissues adjacent to the tumour. Factors such as the total radiation dose, overall treatment time, dose per fraction, dose-rate and the effects of changing the irradiated volume of the spinal cord have been examined in order to improve the therapeutic ratio in radiotherapy. The majority of these studies have concentrated on optimizing dose fractionation schedules. Only recently have attempts been made to modify this effect by the administration of therapeutic agents after irradiation but before the development of the lesion. Despite this interest the problem still exists. At present there is no effective clinically applied treatment towards radiation-induced normal tissue injury, however, some symptoms for example swelling or pain during inflammatory phase may respond to corticosteroids (Godwin-Austen 1975). There are a number of agents, which have been used experimentally, some clinically, to alleviate radiation damage. The results of these studies are reviewed here. A number of substances, generally named Biological Response Modifiers (BRMs), with diverse mode of actions have been used in post irradiation modification of normal tissue reactions. The effect and mode of action of a number of these treatments are discussed here. Classical radioprotectors, that are mainly thiolcontaining substances such as Amifostine (Andreassen 2003), are used for prophylaxis and should be administered before or at the time of irradiation. These substances have been deliberately excluded in this article.

 
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