European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology

, Volume 269, Issue 11, pp 2303–2308

New aspects of induction chemotherapy for head and neck cancer: POSTASCO 2011

Review Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00405-012-1999-2

Cite this article as:
Mumme, A.M., Laban, S. & Knecht, R. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol (2012) 269: 2303. doi:10.1007/s00405-012-1999-2


Treatment options of patients with advanced head and neck cancer developed in the last years. Surgical approaches with or without radiotherapy used to be the standard therapy for a long time. Calls for organ preservation, poor overall survival and unsatisfactory quality of life made changes in this therapy regime necessary. Systemical approaches were evaluated, first concepts of platinum-based chemotherapy paired with 5-fluorouracil (PF) made up the basis of induction chemotherapy (ICT). Hypothesized advantage of this regime was improvement in local and distant tumor responsiveness with an acceptable toxicity profile. Further investigations proved the addition of docetaxel (TPF) superior to PF, which presents the gold standard of current induction chemotherapy regimes. Long-term results underlining well-known aspects of this regime as well as new approaches of induction chemotherapy were published at ASCO 2011, including the addition of bioimmunotherapy to radiotherapy, adding nanoparticle-bound albumin to chemotherapy and investigations in toxicity reduction. Further investigations are still made not only to increase survival outcomes and local control but also to improve quality of life by reducing acute and late toxicities.


Carcinoma Head and neck Chemotherapy induction Biological targets Taxanes 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck SurgeryUniversity Medical Center Hamburg-EppendorfHamburgGermany

Personalised recommendations