Prostate Cancer Outcomes in Patients Living With HIV/AIDS Treated With Radiation Therapy: A Systematic Review

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Advances in radiation oncology








PURPOSE: A consensus has not been reached regarding the treatment and outcomes of prostate cancer (PCa) in people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). This systematic review aims to summarize the evidence on the management of PCa with radiation therapy (RT) in PLWHA diagnosed with PCa. METHODS AND MATERIALS: Searches were conducted in the PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Scopus databases during September 2021 using Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) criteria. Articles reporting on outcomes of PLWHA treated for PCa with definitive RT were sought for inclusion. RESULTS: A total of 9 studies with 187 patients with HIV who received diagnoses of PCa met inclusion criteria. The duration of HIV infection to PCa diagnosis ranged from 8.5 to 18.6 years with 69% to 100% of patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy at the time of diagnosis. Patients' prostate-specific antigen levels ranged from 8 to 82 ng/mL. The majority of patients (59%) were treated with external beam RT, followed by brachytherapy (20.5%). The 4- or 5-year biochemical failure-free rate was reported to be between 87% and 97% in 3 studies, and 2 studies reported an 84% to 97% 5-year cancer-specific survival. Using Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events criteria, 3 studies reported toxicities and grade 3 toxicity was observed in only 2 patients. CONCLUSIONS: RT is efficacious and well tolerated in PLWHA as supported by the comparable biochemical control, clinical outcome, and mortality to the general population as well as by the mild reports of radiotoxicity. There is mixed evidence regarding the effect of RT on CD4 count and viral load, and further studies are needed to better understand this relationship. These findings support the use of definitive RT in PLWHA with PCa.