The Dry Eye Zone

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Abstract: Preventing dry eye from some cancer treatments

Prevention of radiochemotherapy-induced toxicity with amifostine in patients with malignant orbital tumors involving the lacrimal gland: a pilot study.
Radiat Oncol. 2008 Sep 1;3(1):22.
Goldblum D, Ghadjar P, Curschmann J, Greiner R, Aebersold D.

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: To use amifostine concurrently with radiochemotherapy (CT-RT) or radiotherapy (RT) alone in order to prevent dry eye syndrome in patients with malignancies located in the fronto-orbital region.

METHODS: Five patients (2 males, 3 females) with diagnosed malignancies (Non-Hodgkin B-cell Lymphoma, neuroendocrine carcinoma) involving the lacrimal gland, in which either combined CT-RT or local RT were indicated, were prophylactically treated with amifostine (500mg sc). Single RT fraction dose, total dose and treatment duration were individually adjusted to the patient's need. Acute and late adverse effects were recorded using the RTOG score. Subjective and objective dry eye assessment was performed for the post-treatment control of lacrimal gland function.

RESULTS: All patients have completed CT-RT or RT as indicated. The median total duration of RT was 29 days (range, 23 - 39 days) and the median total RT dose was 40 Gy (range, 36 - 60 Gy). Median lacrimal gland exposure was 35.9 Gy (range, 16.8 - 42.6 Gy). Very good partial or complete tumor remission was achieved in all patients. The treatment was well tolerated without major toxic reactions. Post-treatment control did not reveal in any patient either subjective or objective signs of a dry eye syndrome. CONCLUSIONS: The addition of Amifostine to RT/CT-RT of patients with tumors localized in orbital region was found to be associated with absence of dry eye syndrome.