Medline: 1700080

Journal of Clinical Oncology 8(12): 1971-1980, 1990.

Efficacy and toxicity of 12 courses of ABVD chemotherapy followed by low-dose regional radiation in advanced Hodgkin's disease in children: a report from the Childrens Cancer Study Group.

Fryer CJ, Hutchinson RJ, Krailo M, et al.


Sixty-four patients aged 2 to 18 years with advanced-stage Hodgkin's disease (HD) were treated on a Children's Cancer Study Group (CCSG) pilot toxicity study (521-P). Therapy consisted of 12 courses of Adriamycin (doxorubicin; Adria Laboratories, Columbus, OH), bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine (ABVD), followed by low-dose (2,100 cGy in 12 fractions) regional irradiation (RT). All patients were monitored for toxicity with particular attention to the pulmonary system. Six patients (9%) developed grade 3 or 4 pulmonary toxicity. Three had grade 3 toxicity based solely on changes in carbon monoxide diffusing capacity (DLCO) and remained well for more than 3 years after diagnosis. There was one fatality among the three symptomatic cases. In five cases, toxicity occurred prior to RT. One occurred after seven courses of ABVD, one after nine courses, and three after 10 courses. In one of these five cases, ABVD was stopped. The patient was given nitrogen mustard (mechlorethamine), vincristine, prednisone, and procarbazine (MOPP). This patient subsequently developed recurrence of HD and died of overwhelming sepsis. The other four continued on study and completed their chemotherapy. Three patients had no further bleomycin, and one continued bleomycin at 50% of the assigned dose. They all received mantle RT following chemotherapy, one with a boost dose to the mediastinum to 3,800 cGy and one with added RT to both lungs (1,050 cGy). In the sixth case of pulmonary toxicity, symptoms were first noticed 2 weeks after mantle RT to 3,500 cGy. This patient died of progressive respiratory failure. The event-free survival (EFS) and overall survival is 87% at 3 years. These early results indicate that this therapy is effective in advanced HD in children but has a 9% incidence of acute pulmonary toxicity.

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