Radiotherapy is often used for the treatment of bone metastases from renal cell carcinoma (RCC). However, radiotherapy can cause a number of bone-related adverse events, such as fracture, loss of sensation and movement in the hands and feet (paraplegia), surgery or radiotherapy for local recurrence, or severe pain in bone metastases that  are resistant to radiotherapy. A recent study published in the Japanese Journal of Clinical Oncology investigated whether zoledronic acid and radiotherapy could prevent local bone-related events in patient with RCC bone metastases.

Twenty-seven patients were included in the study and followed-up for up to 19 months. After one year, nearly 78% of patients were free from bone-related adverse events. Common severe side effects included low levels of calcium in the blood and increases in other blood biomarkers (sGPT; serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase and sGOT; serum glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase). There were no life-threatening adverse events or deaths.

This study shows that zoledronic acid combined with radiotherapy were a well-tolerated and promising treatment for reducing bone-related adverse events for bone metastases from RCC.

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