Every year around 450 men in Switzerland develop testicular cancer, which is the most common type of cancer in men aged between 18 and 35. Early-stage seminomas usually respond well to treatment.
After surgery on the primary tumour, the adjuvant standard therapy for a stage IIA or IIB seminoma is chemotherapy or radiotherapy. The two standard treatments are not usually combined. Although these treatments are extremely effective, they are intensive and bear the risk of longer-term side-effects such as damage to blood vessels, kidneys, intestines or the inner ear, or the development of a second cancer.
As the patients are often young, it is particularly relevant to reduce the risk of these side-effects as much as possible. Trial SAKK 01/18 is thus examining a new therapeutic approach: the combination of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, with a much weaker form of each therapy being used. The combination is expected to produce high rates of local tumour control (by means of radiotherapy) and the eradication of micrometastases (by means of chemotherapy). Specifically, the trial aims to investigate how the trial therapy affects the patients’ quality of life.
Around 135 patients will take part in the trial.