BACKGROUND: The objective of this study was to explore the 10-year plus outcomes of Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy with concomitant chemotherapy (CRT) combined with preventive swallowing rehabilitation (CRT+) for head and neck cancer (HNC).
METHODS: Subjective and objective swallowing, trismus, and speech related outcomes were assessed at 10-year plus after CRT+. Outcomes were compared to previously published 6-year results of the same cohort.
RESULTS: Fourteen of the 22 patients at 6-year follow-up were evaluable. Although objective swallowing-related outcomes showed no deterioration (eg, no feeding tube dependency and no pneumonia), swallowing-related quality of life slightly deteriorated over time. No patients had or perceived trismus. Voice and speech questionnaires showed little problems in daily life. Overall quality of life (QOL) was good.
CONCLUSIONS: After CRT with preventive rehabilitation exercises for advanced HNC, swallowing, trismus, and speech related outcomes moderately deteriorated from 6 to 10 years, with an on average good overall QOL after.