Adverse events risk associated with bevacizumab addition to breast cancer chemotherapy: A meta-analysis

J. Cortes, V. Calvo, N. Ramírez-Merino, J. O'shaughnessy, A. Brufsky, N. Robert, M. Vidal, E. Muñoz, J. Perez, S. Dawood, C. Saura, S. Di cosimo, A. González-Martín, M. Bellet, O. E. Silva, D. Miles, A. Llombart, J. Baselga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Bevacizumab is a monoclonal antibody against vascular endothelial growth factor with the ability to increase progression-free survival in metastatic breast cancer (MBC). A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted to determine the risk of the most clinically relevant adverse outcomes associated with the use of bevacizumab in the treatment of breast cancer. Patients and methods: We included phase III clinical trials that used bevacizumab alone or in combination with chemotherapy as for MBC or locally recurrent. Statistical analyses were conducted to calculate summary odds ratio (OR) of the eight most relevant adverse outcomes related with bevacizumab. Results: Five clinical trials were included in the meta-analysis. Summary odds ratios obtained showed a statistically significant bevacizumab-associated increased risk in four of the adverse outcomes studied: proteinuria (OR = 27.68), hypertension (OR = 12.76), left ventricular dysfunction (LVD) (OR = 2.25), and hemorrhagic events (OR = 4.07). No statistically significant differences were found for gastrointestinal (GI) perforation, vascular events, fatal events, or febrile neutropenia. Conclusions: Bevacizumab did increase the risk of LVD and hemorrhagic events. The addition of bevacizumab to chemotherapy in patients with metastatic breast cancer was not associated with a significant increase in grade ≥3 arterial or venous thromboembolic events, GI perforation, or fatal events.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1130-1137
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2012


  • Adverse events
  • Bevacizumab
  • Breast cancer
  • Meta-analysis
  • Safety
  • Toxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Hematology


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