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SCORAD III findings presented at ASCO conference
03 July 2017
A study coordinated by the CRUK & UCL Cancer Trials Centre has shown that giving single dose radiotherapy is as effective as multi dose radiotherapy in relieving symptoms of spinal cord compression.

The SCORAD III trial, now in follow up, has aimed to compare the two treatments since beginning recruitment in the UK in 2010. 

Cancers which spread to the bones commonly affect the spine. This may put pressure on the spinal canal, which can lead to back pain and difficulty in walking. Many patients with solid tumours will go on to develop bone metastases, and 3-5% of all cancer patients will develop metastatic spinal cord compression.

The findings were presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) in the USA last month. In addition, the study was selected for ASCO’s official Press Program, a distinction given to less than 1% of Annual Meeting abstracts. 

Sharon Forsyth, Senior Trial Coordinator at the CTC, remarked: ‘SCORAD was a very important trial, not just because it showed that patients can get symptom relief from a single dose of radiotherapy, but because patients receiving end-of-life care were asked to take part in research.

‘There is often a reluctance to approach these patients but we have shown that they are very willing and want be included in trials. Over 70% of patients approached for the trial wanted to take part. The patients were also happy to complete quality of life questionnaires throughout the trial, with 77% of forms returned to the CTC.’

ASCO coverage of the trial, including an interview with Chief Investigator Peter Hoskin, can be found here. The study’s final patient was recruited in April 2016.


Photo: Spine metastases from breast cancer. Credit: Wellcome Images
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