IN PRESS: ECT for the treatment of primary basal cell carcinoma; A randomised control trial comparing ECT and surgery w/5 year follow up

This BCR-funded prospective randomised controlled trial investigated whether Electrochemotherapy could be effectively used as a primary treatment for Basal Cell carcinoma (BCC). BCC is the most common skin cancer and numbers are increasing. ECT is a localised treatment which combines low-dose chemotherapy with an electrical pulse which temporarily permeabilised cells allowing the chemotherapy to enter cancer cells directly. ECT causes minimal damage to surrounding health tissue.

Of the 100 patients enrolled, 52 were randomised to ECT and 48 to surgery, an established treatment for BCC. Patients were followed for 5 years. In the ECT group, 86% had complete response at 60 days. 11% had a second treatment following which 100% complete response was observed. In the surgical group 95% had a complete response after 90 days, with 5% having a second wider excision. There was no significant difference between the two treatments groups in the reporting of adverse effects. At the 5 year follow-up, there was 1 recurrence in the surgical group, and 5 in the ECT group, which was not statistically significant.

The authors, led by surgeon, Mr Jim Clover, concluded that this study, the first randomised controlled trial of its kind, confirms that ECT is an effect treatment for BCC, with good long term treatment response.

The complete study is available at the following link:

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