• cetuximab;
  • renal failure;
  • hemodialysis;
  • head and neck cancer;
  • chemoradiation



Concurrent chemoradiotherapy with cisplatin is the standard therapy for patients with unresectable locally advanced head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. However, cisplatin administration in patients on hemodialysis is complicated by the need to perform hemodialysis immediately after the infusion. Concurrent chemoradiation with cetuximab has been approved in definitive treatment of locally advanced head and neck cancer. Although cetuximab is not excreted via the kidneys, its use in patients on hemodialysis has not been reported.

Methods and Results.

We present the case of a 65-year-old man undergoing hemodialysis, with stage IVA squamous cell carcinoma of the hypopharynx. Given the logistics of performing hemodialysis immediately postcisplatin, he received concurrent chemoradiotherapy with cetuximab. He tolerated treatment well with minor side effects.


Cetuximab can be safely used in patients with renal impairment. This is the first reported case of the use of cetuximab in a patient undergoing hemodialysis. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Head Neck, 2009