Second malignancies after radiotherapy for prostate cancer: systematic review and meta-analysis

 To determine the association between exposure to radiotherapy for the treatment of prostate cancer and subsequent second malignancies (second primary cancers).

 Systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies.

 Medline and Embase up to 6 April 2015 with no restrictions on year or language.

 Comparative studies assessing the risk of second malignancies in patients exposed or unexposed to radiotherapy in the course of treatment for prostate cancer were selected by two reviewers independently with any disagreement resolved by consensus.

 Two reviewers independently extracted study characteristics and outcomes. Risk of bias was assessed with the Newcastle-Ottawa scale. Outcomes were synthesized with random effects models and Mantel-Haenszel weighting. Unadjusted odds ratios and multivariable adjusted hazard ratios, when available, were pooled.

 Second cancers of the bladder, colorectal tract, rectum, lung, and hematologic system.

 Of 3056 references retrieved, 21 studies were selected for analysis. Most included studies were large multi-institutional reports but had moderate risk of bias. The most common type of radiotherapy was external beam; 13 studies used patients treated with surgery as controls and eight used patients who did not undergo radiotherapy as controls. The length of follow-up among studies varied. There was increased risk of cancers of the bladder (four studies; adjusted hazard ratio 1.67, 95% confidence interval 1.55 to 1.80), colorectum (three studies; 1.79, 1.34 to 2.38), and rectum (three studies; 1.79, 1.34 to 2.38), but not cancers of the hematologic system (one study; 1.64, 0.90 to 2.99) or lung (two studies; 1.45, 0.70 to 3.01), after radiotherapy compared with the risk in those unexposed to radiotherapy. The odds of a second cancer varied depending on type of radiotherapy: treatment with external beam radiotherapy was consistently associated with increased odds while brachytherapy was not. Among the patients who underwent radiotherapy, from individual studies, the highest absolute rates reported for bladder, colorectal, and rectal cancers were 3.8%, 4.2%, and 1.2%, respectively, while the lowest reported rates were 0.1%, 0.3%, and 0.3%.

 Radiotherapy for prostate cancer was associated with higher risks of developing second malignancies of the bladder, colon, and rectum compared with patients unexposed to radiotherapy, but the reported absolute rates were low. Further studies with longer follow-up are required to confirm these findings.

BMJ (Clinical research ed.). 2016 Mar 02*** epublish ***

Christopher J D Wallis, Alyson L Mahar, Richard Choo, Sender Herschorn, Ronald T Kodama, Prakesh S Shah, Cyril Danjoux, Steven A Narod, Robert K Nam

Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto, Suite 425, 155 College Street, Toronto, ON M5T 3M6, Canada., Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada., Department of Radiation Oncology, Mayo Clinic, 200 1st Street Southwest, Rochester, MN 55902, USA., Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada., Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada., Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto, Suite 425, 155 College Street, Toronto, ON M5T 3M6, Canada Department of Pediatrics, Mount Sinai Hospital, University of Toronto, 600 University Avenue, Toronto, ON M5G 1X5, Canada., Department of Radiation Oncology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada., Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Toronto, 7th floor, 790 Bay Street, Toronto, ON M5G 1N8, Canada., Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Room MG-406, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, ON M4N 3M5, Canada

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