This study is to evaluate the safety and efficacy of preoperative radiotherapy (RT) combined with bolus infusional 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) or oral capecitabine in patients with locally advanced rectal cancer (LARC).Seventy-four patients were retrospectively analyzed. Twenty-seven patients were treated with 5-FU (350 mg/m(2) IV bolus) and leucovorin (20 mg/m(2) IV bolus) for 5 days/week during week 1 and 5 of RT. Forty-seven patients were treated with capecitabine (850 mg/m(2), twice daily for 5 days/week). Both groups received the same RT course (45-50.4 Gy/25 fractions, 5 days/week, for 5 weeks). Patients underwent surgery in 6 weeks after completion of the chemoradiotherapy. Data of the observational study were collected.Grade 3 or 4 toxicities occurred in 40.7% (5-FU) and 19.1% (capecitabine) of the patients (P = 0.044). Six patients in the 5-FU group (22.2%) and six patients in the capecitabine group (14%) achieved complete response. Primary tumor (T) downstaging were achieved in 51.9% (5-FU) and 69.8% (capecitabine) of the patients. The pathological ypT0-2 stage was 40.7% (5-FU) and 67.4% (capecitabine) (P = 0.028).In consideration of the better ypT0-2 downstaging rate, less severe toxicities, and no need for indwelling intravenous device on oral capecitabine regimen, the administration of oral capecitabine with RT may be a more favorable option in the neoadjuvant treatment for LARC.
International Journal of Colorectal Disease, 27(6), 727-736