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Volume 20, Number 2, 2015

Postoperative radiotherapy in prostate cancer: Analysis of prognostic factors in a series of 282 patients

Giuseppina Apicella, Debora Beldì, Giansilvio Marchioro, Sara Torrente, Sara Tunesi, Corrado Magnani, Alessandro Volpe, Carlo Terrone, Marco Krengli



To assess the outcomes of patients treated with postoperative RT in relation to the possible prognostic factors.


Postoperative radiotherapy (RT) has been proved to reduce the risk of biochemical recurrence in high-risk prostate cancer patients. Baseline prostate specific antigen (PSA), pathological Gleason score (GS), positive surgical margins, nodal status and seminal vesicle invasion are independent predictors of biochemical relapse.

Materials and methods

The clinical records of 282 patients who underwent postoperative RT were retrospectively reviewed. The prognostic value of postoperative PSA, preoperative risk class, nodal status, pathological GS, margins status, and administration of hormonal therapy (HT) was analyzed.


Postoperative RT was delivered with a median dose to the prostatic fossa of 66 Gy (range 50–72) in 1.8–2 Gy/fraction. Median follow-up was 23.1 months (range 6–119). Five-year actuarial biochemical disease-free survival (bDFS) and overall survival rates were 76% and 95%, respectively. Higher bDFS was found for patients with postoperative PSA <0.02 ng/ml (p = 0.03), low preoperative risk class (p = 0.01), pN0 (p = 0.003), GS 4–6 (p = 0.0006), no androgen deprivation therapy (p = 0.02), and irrespective of surgical margin status (p = 0.10). Multivariate analysis showed that postoperative PSA and Gleason score had a significant impact on bDFS (p = 0.039 and p = 0.05, respectively).


Postoperative RT with a dose of 66 Gy offers an acceptable toxicity and an optimal disease control after radical prostatectomy in patients with different risk features. A postoperative PSA >0.02 ng/ml could be considered as a prognostic factor and a tool to select patients at risk for progression.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2015; 20(2) : 113-122

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