Ten Year Cures of Malignant Disease by Roentgen Therapy
For less than forty years, roentgen therapy has been employed for the treatment of malignant diseases. The methods of administering the treatment have changed rapidly as knowledge of the biological and physical aspects of radiation has increased and mechanical improvements have been made. Frequently, it is difficult to evaluate the benefits of roentgen therapy because the patients to whom it is administered often have extensive disease and are hopelessly ill from the standpoint of curability. The treatment is given for the palliation of pain or to extend the economic usefulness of the patients, especially after other therapeutic procedures have failed or were contraindicated. Actual cures of malignant diseases by roentgen therapy in the past have not been common; however, they have been reported more and more frequently during the past few years.
The following cases serve to illustrate what has been accomplished by the use of the methods employed more than ten years ago.
Case 1: A man, 40 years of age, was seen in June, 1923, complaining of gastric disturbances. A mass was palpable in the epigastrium, and this caused a deformity by pressure upon the stomach as shown by roentgen examination.
A clinical diagnosis of extragastric tumor was made and laparotomy was performed by Dr. William E. Lower. A very large, soft, purplish, extremely vascular, retroperitoneal tumor was found to occupy the epigastric portion of the peritoneal cavity. The growth extended laterally downward to the level of the third lumbar vertebra and was in contact with the right. . .