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Brain Cancer treatment details. Chemotherapy. Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH, United States

Survival: 5.8 months
Toxicity Grade: 5
Treatments: Chemotherapy
Drugs: Hycamtin
Country: United States
City/State/Province: Lebanon, NH
Hospital: Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center
Journal: Link
Date: 2/2005

Patients: This Phase II trial involved 15 patients with glioblastoma multiforme and 5 patients with anaplastic astrocytoma. Eleven patients were men, and nine were women. The mean age was 62 years. All patients had prior radiotherapy, and half had prior chemotherapy.

Treatment: The treatment consisted of a two chemotherapeutic drugs: paclitaxel and topotecan, and G-CSF (filgrastim).

Toxicity: Two patients died of infectious complications that developed during treatment. Other toxicities included Grade 3-4 leukopenia and thrombocytopenia.

Results: The median survival was 5.78 months (25 weeks) for all patients. The authors terminated the study citing severity of hematological toxicities and limited number of objective responses. The authors conclude, "Given the data it is unlikely that either of these drugs [paclitaxel or topotecan], alone or in combination, will play a significant role in the management of high grade glial neoplasms in the future."

Support: The study was supported by a grant from GlaxoSmithKline. GlaxoSmithKline manufactures and markets topotecan (Hycamtin).

Correspondence: J. Marc Pipas, MD

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