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Breast Cancer treatment details. Chemotherapy. The Ottawa Hospital Regional Cancer Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Survival: 5.9 months
Toxicity Grade: 4
Treatments: Chemotherapy
Drugs: Pemetrexed
Country: Canada
City/State/Province: Ottawa, Ontario
Hospital: The Ottawa Hospital Regional Cancer Centre
Journal: Link
Date: 7/2009

Patients: This phase 2 study involved sixteen women with metastatic breast cancer. Their median age was 54, ranging from 33 to77 years of age. Fourteen of these women had previously been treated with chemotherapy.

Treatment: These women were treated with the chemotherapy drugs pemetrexed and gemcitabine.

Toxicity: The most common grade 3 or 4 toxicity was febrile neutropenia (fever and low levels of white blood cells), reported in three patients. Other grade 3 or 4 toxicities were fatigue, skin rash, anorexia, lung infiltrate, pneumonia, increased liver enzymes, and arterial ischemia (narrowing or blocking of an artery).

Results: The median overall survival was 5.9 months. Most of the women in this study had cancer that continued to worsen, so the study was stopped.

Support: This study was funded by Eli Lilly, which markets pemetrexed as Alimta and gemcitabine as Gemzar.

Correspondence: Dr. Susan F. Dent

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