When is local irradiation used?

In general, radiotherapy for carcinoid tumor arising from the foregut is utilized only to treat painful metastatic bone metastases (in which instances it is usually effective), brain metastases, unresectable carcinoid of the larynx, unresectable carcinoid of the thymus and sometimes unresectable carcinoids of the lung. It is questionable whether radiotherapy is effective for lung carcinoid and it has the potential for injuring healthy parts of the adjacent lung by causing radiation pneumonitis and thereby impairing breathing further. It might be considered as a last option when all other treatments, including chemotherapy, have failed. I feel that there is no role for radiotherapy for gastric or pancreatic carcinoids.

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