Medline: 1727915

Journal of Clinical Oncology 10(1): 134-142, 1992.

Comparative study of pamidronate disodium and etidronate disodium in the treatment of cancer-related hypercalcemia.

Gulcalp R, Ritch P, Wiernik PH, et al.


This multicenter, double-blind, randomized trial was performed to determine the efficacy and safety of pamidronate disodium (APD) in comparison to etidronate disodium (EHDP) in the treatment of cancer-related hypercalcemia.

Patients and Methods:
Sixty-five male and female adult patients with cancer and corrected calcium levels of greater than or equal to 12.0 mg/dL after 24 hours of hydration were randomized to receive either 60 mg APD given as a single 24-hour infusion or 7.5 mg/kg EHDP given as a 2-hour infusion daily for 3 days.

APD normalized corrected calcium levels in 70% (21 of 30) of patients, whereas EHDP did so in 41% (14 of 34) of patients (P = .026). The mean corrected serum calcium level decreased from 14.6 to 10.5 mg/dL in the APD-treated group and from 13.8 to 11.6 mg/dL in the EHDP-treated group within the first week of treatment. There was no difference in response to APD in patients without versus those with bone metastases (78% v 67%). Both drugs were well tolerated.

This study demonstrated that a single 60-mg infusion of APD is safe and more effective than EHDP given at the dose of 7.5 mg/kg for 3 days in the treatment of cancer-related hypercalcemia.

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