PURPOSE: We tried to evaluate the role of conventional radiotherapy alone or with neoadjuvant chemotherapy in the hypopharyngeal cncer by retrospective analysis. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Between Jul. 1985 and Sep. 1992, 42 patinets of hypopharyngeal cancer were treated by conventional radiotherapy alone or combined with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. The male to female ration was 20:1 with a median age of 58 years. Twelve patients were treated by conventional radiotherapy alone and 30 patients were treated by neoadjuvant chemotherapy and radiotherapy. RESULTS: Seven patients were stage I, II and the patients with stage III and IV were 10 and 25, respectively at the time of presentation. The overall survival and disease-specific survival rates at 24 month were 12.9% and 15.5%, respectively. Two-year survival rates of stage I+II and III+IV patients were 50% and 6.3%, respectively(p<0.05). Sixteen patients (38%) revealed CR and 26 patients(62%) revealed less that CR at the end of radiotherapy and their 2-year survival rates were 31.3% and 0%, respectively(p<0.05). On univariate anaysis, stage, T-stage, N-stage and treatment response were the significant prognositc factors, but only stage an dtreatment response were significant on multivariate analysis. CONCLUSION: This conventional radiotherapy alone or with neoadjuvant chemotherapy does not seem to be sufficient in the treatment of most advanced hypopharyngeal cancer. Therefore other treatment modalities such as hyperfractionation or concurrent chemoradiotherapy should be considered.