Intrahepatic chemotherapy with floxuridine, leucovorin and dexamethasone in continuous infusion and mitomycin-C bolus in unresectable hepatic metastases from colorectal cancer: A phase II study

Maurizio Bertuccelli, Alfredo Falcone, Silvana Campoccia, Monica Conti, Isa Brunetti, Davide Caramella, PierCristoforo Giulianotti, Franco Mosca, Carlo Bartolozzi, PierFranco Conte

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Abstract

Background: Intrahepatic continuous infusion FUDR induces a 50% response rate in patients with hepatic metastases from colorectal cancer. Lower rates have been observed in pretreated patients. The combination of floxuridine plus leucovorin has obtained over 70% responses, with high hepatic toxicity. The use of dexamethasone can decrease hepatic toxicity. A randomized study reported an increase in response rate and a decrease in hepatic toxicity in a group of patients treated with floxuridine plus dexamethasone compared to a group receiving only floxuridine. Moreover, the combination of mitomycin C, carmustine and floxuridine is also effective in pretreated patients. Methods: On such premises, since July 1993 we have treated 39 patients affected by unresectable hepatic metastases from colon carcinoma (26 patients) and rectal carcinoma (13 patients) with the combination continuous infusion of floxuridine (0.20 mg/kg per day) + leucovorin (7.5 mg/m2/day) + dexamethasone (20 mg on days 1 to 14) and bolus mitomycin C (10 mg/m2 on day 1) via the hepatic artery. Cycles were administered every four weeks. There were as 28 males and 11 females, with a median age of 64 years (range, 39-75) and a median PS = 0. Twenty-two patients were pretreated with systemic chemotherapy including 5-fluorouracil plus leucovorin. Total number of cycles was 189, with a median of 6 cycles per patient (range, 1-12). Results: Of 39 patients 37 were assessable for response (2 patients were not assessable because they stopped chemotherapy for occlusion of the catheter after the first cycle). There were 3 complete responses (1 in a naive patient and 2 in pretreated patients), 16 partial responses (11 in pretreated patients and 5 in chemonaive patients), 4 minor responses, 4 stable disease and 10 progressive disease. The overall response rate was 51.3% (95 CI, 51.3-86.7%). Median time to progression was 6 months (range, 1-34+). Overall survival was 18 months (range, 1-34+). Of 39 patients, 36 were assessable for toxicity (WHO) (3 patients died after the first cycle for progression of disease): diarrhea and nausea-vomiting grade 3-4 occurred respectively in 15 (41%) and 3 patients (8%); hepatic toxicity was mild. Conclusions: The treatment we used showed an elevated activity in liver metastases from colorectal cancer even in patients pretreated and resistant to systemic chemotherapy, although toxicity grade 3-4 diarrhea occurred in approximately 40% of the patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)473-477
Number of pages5
JournalTumori
Volume85
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1999

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Keywords

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Floxuridine
  • Hepatic metastases
  • Intrahepatic chemotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research

Cite this

Bertuccelli, M., Falcone, A., Campoccia, S., Conti, M., Brunetti, I., Caramella, D., Giulianotti, P., Mosca, F., Bartolozzi, C., & Conte, P. (1999). Intrahepatic chemotherapy with floxuridine, leucovorin and dexamethasone in continuous infusion and mitomycin-C bolus in unresectable hepatic metastases from colorectal cancer: A phase II study. Tumori, 85(6), 473-477.