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Purpose: To evaluate the feasibility and efficacy of a hyperfractionated accelerated radiotherapy (RT) schedule combined with concomitant chemotherapy (Cx) in patients with locally advanced head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma. Methods and Materials: Between 2004 and 2007, a total of 90 patients with locoregionally advanced head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma underwent irradiation according to a hybrid fractionation schedule consisting of 20 fractions of 2 Gy (once daily) followed by 20 fractions of 1.6 Gy (twice daily) to a total dose of 72 Gy. Concomitant Cx (cisplatinum 100 mg/msup 2) was administered at the start of Weeks 1 and 4. Treatment outcome and toxicitymore were retrospectively compared with a previous patient group (n = 73) treated with the same schedule, but without concomitant Cx, between 2001 and 2004. Results: The locoregional control (LRC) rate was 70% after 2 years. Two-year overall and 2-year disease-free survival rates were 74% and 60%, respectively. In comparison with the RT-only group, an improvement of 15% in both LRC (p = 0.03) and overall survival (p = 0.09) was observed. All patients were treated to full radiation dose according to protocol, although the Cx schedule had to be adjusted in 12 patients. No acute Grade 4 or 5 toxicity was seen, but incidences of Grade 3 acute mucositis (74.5% vs. 50.7%; p = 0.002) and dysphagia (82.2% vs. 47.9%; p
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The objective of this study was to evaluate the performance of a highly accelerated breath-hold 3-dimensional noncontrast-enhanced steady-state free precession thoracic magnetic resonance angiography (NC-MRA) technique in a clinical population, including assessment of image quality, aortic dimensions, and aortic pathology, compared with electrocardiographically gated gadolinium-enhanced MRA (Gd-MRA). After approval from the institution board and informed consent were obtained, 30 patients (22 men; mean age, 53.4 years) with known or suspected aortic pathology were imaged with NC-MRA followed by Gd-MRA at a single examination at 1.5 T. Images were made anonymous and reviewed by 2 readers for aortic pathology and diagnostic confidence on a 5-point scale (1, worst; 5, best) on a patient basis. Image quality and artifacts were also evaluated in 10 vascular segments: aortic annulus, sinuses of Valsalva, sinotubular junction, ascending aorta, aortic arch, descending aorta, diaphragmatic aorta, great vessel origins, and the left main and right coronary artery origins. Finally, aortic dimensions were measured in each of the 7 aortic segments. The Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to compare diagnostic confidence, image quality, and artifact scores between NC-MRA and Gd-MRA. The paired Student t test and Bland-Altman analysis were used for comparison of aortic dimensions. All patients completed NC-MRA and Gd-MRA successfully. Vascular pathologic findings were concordant with Gd-MRA in 29 of 30 (96.7%) patients and 28 of 30 (93.3%) patients for readers 1 and 2, respectively, with high diagnostic confidence (mean [SD], 4.35 [0.77]) not significantly different from Gd-MRA (4.38 [0.64]; P = 0.74). The image quality and artifact scores were comparable with Gd-MRA in most vascular segments. Notable differences were observed at the ascending aorta, where Gd-MRA had superior image quality (4.13 [0.73]) compared with NC-MRA (3.80 [0.88]; P = 0.028), and at the coronary artery
The use of robotic technology in general thoracic surgical practice continues to expand across various institutions and at this point many major common thoracic surgical procedures have been successfully performed by general thoracic surgeons using the robotic technology. These procedures include lung resections, excision of mediastinal masses, esophagectomy and reconstruction for malignant and benign esophageal pathologies. The success of robotic technology can be attributed to highly magnified 3-D visualization, dexterity afforded by 7 degrees of freedom that allow difficult dissections in narrow fields and the ease of reproducibility once the initial set up and instruments become familiar to the surgeon. As the application of robotic technology trickle downs from major academic centers to community hospitals, it becomes imperative that its role, limitations, learning curve and financial impact are understood by the novice robotic surgeon. In this article, we share our experience as it relates to the setup, common pitfalls and long term results for more commonly performed robotic assisted lung and thymic resections using the 4 arm da Vinci Xi robotic platform (Intuitive Surgical, Inc., Sunnyvale, CA, USA) to help guide those who are interested in adopting this technology.
The European Society of Thoracic Surgeons (ESTS) Database is a free registry created by ESTS in 2001. The current online version was launched in 2007. It runs currently on a Dendrite platform with extensive data security and frequent backups. The main features are a specialty-specific, procedure-specific, prospectively maintained, periodically audited and web-based electronic database, designed for quality control and performance monitoring, which allows for the collection of all general thoracic procedures. Data collection is the "backbone" of the ESTS database. It includes many risk factors, processes of care and outcomes, which are specially designed for quality control and performance audit. The user can download and export their own data and use them for internal analyses and quality control audits. The ESTS database represents the gold standard of clinical data collection for European General Thoracic Surgery. Over the past years, the ESTS database has achieved many accomplishments. In particular, the database hit two major milestones: it now includes more than 235 participating centers and 70,000 surgical procedures. The ESTS database is a snapshot of surgical practice that aims at improving patient care. In other words, data capture should become integral to routine patient care, with the final objective of improving quality of care within Europe. 350c69d7ab