A prospective study of a new combination chemotherapy regimen in patients older than 70 years with unfavorable non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

U. Tirelli, V. Zagonel, D. Errante, D. Serraino, R. Talamini, M. De Cicco, A. Carbone, S. Monfardini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: A prospective trial with a new combination of etoposide, mitoxantrone, and prednimustine (VMP), specifically devised for elderly patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL), was undertaken. Patients and Methods: Between January 1987 and April 1990, 52 consecutive unselected patients older than 70 years (median age, 75.6 years) with stage I to IV intermediate- and high-grade NHL, or with stage III to IV low-grade malignancy with symptomatic disease received etoposide and prednimustine 80 mg/m2 orally for 5 days and mitoxantrone 8 to 10 mg/m2 day 1 intravenously (IV), every 21 days. Fourteen patients were previously treated. Results: Among the 48 assessable patients, the objective response rate was 81%; 46% of the patients achieved a complete response (CR). The overall toxicity seemed to be acceptable, with 15 (7%) episodes of grade 4 leukope-nia and 41 (18%) episodes of grade 3, over a total of 226 administered cycles. The median survival was 12 months. The patients who obtained CR have a longer survival than those who did not (34 v 8 months; P <.001). Fifty-eight percent of patients achieving CR were free from relapse at 24 months; up to 36 months from the start of therapy, 25% were free from relapse. As far as patients affected by diffuse histiocytic lymphoma, 66% of previously untreated patients obtained a CR, and 55% of them were still disease-free at 24 months from the start of therapy. Conclusion: We conclude that VMP is effective, well tolerated, and feasible on an outpatient basis in an unselected, elderly population affected by unfavorable NHL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)228-236
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume10
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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