Sequential use of the TPO-RAs romiplostim and eltrombopag in ITP patients failing either agent was retrospectively evaluated to assess efficacy and impact of clinical characteristics on outcome. Patients were grouped into 5 categories: efficacy issues: 1st TPO-RA failure; loss of response; non-efficacy issues: platelet fluctuations; patient's preference; adverse event development. Either one TPO-RA sequence was analyzed at 3 month and at last follow-up. 106/546 patients on TPO-RA underwent switch and 65% achieved, regained or maintained a short- term response independent of switch sequence, gender or age; lower response rates were associated with lines of previous therapy; disease duration lowers probability to respond. Clinically, patients switched for efficacy issue did not differ from those switched for non-efficacy issues. Response was achieved/regained in 57.8% of patients switched for efficacy issues, the lowest response rates were observed in non-responders to 1st TPO-RA; 80% of patients switched for non-efficacy issues maintained a response. Platelet fluctuation resolved in 44.4%. Of the 49 patients evaluable for long-term outcome, 27 were in response on therapy; 16 discontinued the TPO-RA for reasons other than efficacy, while only 6 were non responders. We confirm the efficacy of TPO-RA switch; once achieved, response to the 2nd TPO-RA seems durable.
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