Evaluation of Acute Locoregional Toxicity in Patients with Breast Cancer Treated with Adjuvant Radiotherapy in Combination with Bevacizumab


Goyal, S., Rao, M. S., Khan, A., Huzzy, L., Green, C., & Haffty, B. G. (2011). Evaluation of acute locoregional toxicity in patients with breast cancer treated with adjuvant radiotherapy in combination with bevacizumab. International Journal of Radiation Oncology* Biology* Physics, 79(2), 408-413.



Preclinical studies have shown that bevacizumab combined with radiotherapy (RT) induces a radiosensitizing effect. Published reports regarding the safety of combination therapy involving bevacizumab and RT are lacking. The purpose of this study was to analyze acute locoregional toxicity in patients with breast cancer receiving concurrent bevacizumab plus RT.

Methods and Materials

After institutional review board approval was obtained, patients with breast cancer who received bevacizumab were identified; these patients were then cross-referenced with patients receiving RT. Toxicity was scored by the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events. Patients were matched 1:1 with those who did not receive bevacizumab. Statistical analysis was performed to analyze toxicity between the two groups.


Fourteen patients were identified to have received bevacizumab plus RT. All patients receivedbevacizumab during RT without delay or treatment breaks; there were no RT treatment breaks in all patients. No patient receiving bevacizumab plus RT experienced ≥Grade 3 toxicity; 3 matched control patients experienced a Grade 3 skin reaction. There was no difference in fatigue, radiation fibrosis, pneumonitis, or lymphedema between the two groups. Five patients (35%) developed reduction in ejection fraction; 2 with right-sided and 3 with left-sided treatment. Patients with left-sided treatment experienced a persistent reduction in ejection fraction compared with those receiving right-sided treatment.


Concurrent bevacizumab and RT did not increase acute locoregional toxicity in comparison with matched control patients who did not receive RT alone. The addition of concurrent RT when treating the intact breast, chest wall, and associated nodal regions in breast cancer seems to be safe and well tolerated.

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