High-dose sequential chemo-radiotherapy with peripheral blood progenitor cell support for relapsed or refractory Hodgkin's disease - A 6-year update

A. M. Gianni, S. Siena, M. Bregni, F. Lombardi, L. Gandola, M. Di Nicola, M. Magni, F. Peccatori, P. Valagussa, G. Bonadonna

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Background: Very few studies using high-dose therapy and autologous bone marrow transplantation have a long (i.e., >3 years) follow-up. We report here the 6-year update of a study employing high-dose sequential chemo- radiotherapy in 25 patients with poor-risk Hodgkin's disease. Patients and methods: All patients were either refractory (7 patients) or partial responders (9 patients) or early relapses (9 patients) following induction chemotherapy consisting of MOPP/ABVD in 20 patients and MOPP/ABVD followed by salvage CEP for the remaining 5 patients. The high-dose chemo-radiotherapy regimen employed consisted in the rapid sequential administration of high- doses of cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, etoposide and total body irradiation plus melphalan. Results: As compared to 4-year results, the 6-year probabilities of relapse-free survival, freedom from progression and overall survival were almost superimposable. In fact, during the two additional years elapsed since prior survey, only one event occurred (fatal cerebral hemorrhage) that was unrelated to Hodgkin's disease. In particular, the proportion of patients remaining event-free was 78% for those with short initial complete response and 31% for patients who had failed initial MOPP/ABVD. According to previous experience, both groups have a very low or no chance of long-term event-free survival when treated with standard-dose salvage chemotherapy. Conclusions: The very favorable long-term results of the high-dose sequential regimen together with its excellent tolerability and lack of early or late fatal toxicities, will assist clinicians in defining optimal timing for high-dose therapy in the management of Hodgkin's disease. According to a revised cost/benefit analysis, it would appear that, at present, the best timing of high-dose sequential therapy in patients failing MOPP/ABVD is at first early relapse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)889-891
Number of pages3
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Hematology


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