Oesophageal cancer, in particular adenocarcinomas, has shown a rapid and largely unexplained increase in incidence in the Western world. Despite advances in diagnostic and surgical techniques and improved pre- and postoperative care, the prognosis of most patients is poor. This Review will focus on the use of chemotherapy as part of multimodal treatment and for patients with metastatic disease. Randomised phase III trials have, for the most part, failed to demonstrate a survival advantage with the use of chemotherapy. It must be emphasised that many of these phase III trial were underpowered and do not meet today's standards. Recent phase II trials have suggested some progress when chemotherapy is incorporated into the management of patients with oesophageal cancer. However, confirmatory and adequately powered and designed phase III studies are urgently needed to improve patient outcomes and for better palliation of symptoms.

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doi.org/10.1016/j.ejca.2004.10.030, hdl.handle.net/1765/72148
European Journal of Cancer
Department of Medical Oncology

van Meerten, E, & van der Gaast, A. (2005). Systemic treatment for oesophageal cancer. European Journal of Cancer, 41(5), 664–672. doi:10.1016/j.ejca.2004.10.030