Although studies of combination of radiation therapy and chemotheray have shown some indication of usefulness, there is little evidence at present supporting their routine utilization for any type of localized cancer.
However, the long-term control in a portion of patients with Hodgkin's disease from multiple chemotherapeutic agent programs suggests eradication of tumors in these patients, indicating a possible alternative to the extension of radiation therapy to clinically uninvolved areas in the early stage of Hodgkin's disease in future therapeutic trials.
This report includes data from a study of combination vincristine versus placebo during radiation therapy for lymphoma. Significantly better tumor response was seen at the end of radiation therapy, with suggestive improvement in relapse and survival rates in those given the vincristine.
Data regarding the tolerance of patients previously treated with extensive radiotherapy during intensive multiple agent chemotherapy indicated little evidence of greater hematological toxicity or decreased percentage of scheduled drug actually delivered as compared to a group of patients not previously irradiated. Response rates to the chemotherapy program were nearly as high in the previously irradiated group as in those not previously irradiated.