Medline: 8622028

The abstract Journal of Clinical Oncology 14(3): 806-813, 1996. is available online.

The fulltext Journal of Clinical Oncology 14(3): 806-813, 1996. may be available online for subscribers.

Patients with limited-stage small-cell lung cancer treated with concurrent twice-daily chest radiotherapy and etoposide/cisplatin followed by cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, and vincristine.

Johnson BE, Bridges JD, Sobczeck M, et al.


A phase II trial in patients with limited-stage small-cell lung cancer treated with induction etoposide/cisplatin plus twice-daily chest radiotherapy was conducted in an attempt to increase response rates and prolong survival.

Patients and Methods:
Fifty-four previously untreated patients with limited-stage small-cell cancer were treated with etoposide/cisplatin and concurrent radiotherapy at 1.5 Gy twice daily for 3 weeks to a total dose of 45 Gy. Patients then received three more cycles of etoposide/cisplatin followed by four cycles of vincristine, doxorubicin, and cyclophosphamide or an individualized chemotherapy regimen.

Nine patients are alive and free of cancer a median of 4 years (range, 2 to 7) from the start of treatment. Thirty-eight have had progression of their cancer at a median of 1.2 years (range, 0.5 to 5.4) and all have died of small-cell cancer. Thirteen of these 38 patients' (34%) only site of initial relapse was in the CNS and all died of CNS metastases. Five patients died during therapy or from its complications and two patients died of causes other than relapsed small-cell lung cancer and toxicity. The median survival time is 21.3 months, with an actual survival rate of 83% at 1 year, and actuarial survival rates of 43% at 2 years and 19% at 5 years.

This combined modality regimen for patients with limited-stage small-cell lung cancer results in a 2-year survival rate of 43%, but the principal cause of death in these patients is still relapse of the original cancer. Isolated CNS metastases caused more than 30% of the cancer deaths.

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