The aim of this study was to evaluate the symptomatic and endoscopic responses as well as the toxicities in 158 patients with endobronchial. lung cancer treated with high dose rate endobronchial. brachytherapy (HDR-EB). Forty-three patients with stage III NSCLC were treated with 60 Gy external beam radiotherapy (ERT) and three applications of 5 Gy each of HDR-EB (group A). Seventy-four patients who did not receive previous RT were treated with 30Gy ERT and two applications of 7.5 Gy HDR-EB with palliative intent (group B). Forty-one patients with recurrent tumor who were irradiated previously were treated with three applications of 7.5 Gy HDR-EB, with palliative intent (group C). In group A, bronchoscopic complete (CR) and overall response rates (ORR) were 67% and 86%, respectively. Symptomatic improvement was obtained in 58% of patients with cough, 77% of patients with dyspnea and 100% of patients with hemoptysis. Two and 5-year survival rates were 25.5% and 9.5%, respectively and the median survival time (MST) was 11 months. In group B, the bronchoscopic CR and ORR were 39% and 77%, respectively and 28% and 72% in group C. The symptomatic response rates were 57% and 55% for cough, 90% and 78% for dyspnea and 94% and 77% for hemoptysis, with a MST of 7 and 6 months in Groups B and C, respectively. Eighteen patients (11%) died of fatal hemoptysis (FH) with the median time to this event of 7 months. Treatment intent (p < 0.001), totat BED (p < 0.001) and the number of HDR-EB fractions (p < 0.001) were significant prognostic factors for FH. HDR-EB provides effective palliation in relieving the symptoms of patients with enclobronchial lung cancer, however, there is a risk of developing FH that is associated with a high BED and multiple HDR-EB applications. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.