OBJECTIVE: The aim of this investigation focuses on the evaluation of the efficacy of deep-seated Electrochemotherapy (ECT) in terms of pain relief and local objective response, in pre-treated patients with neither further available pharmacological treatments nor eligible for surgery.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Deep percutaneous ECT has been performed in 20 patients subjected to systemic anaesthesia. Bleomycin was administrated intravenously before the application of the electrical pulses on the target area, employing multiple single needles depending on the size and location of the target tumor.
RESULTS: Pain assessment based on Visual Analogue Scale showed significant pain relief one month after treatment in all patients, reducing from 7.5 to 3 as a median value (p-value at Wilcoxon test <0.001). Local symptom-free survival median value was 5.5 months. At the first follow-up (1-2 months), a local disease control rate (LDCR) was observed in 19/20 (95%) patients: complete responses in 2 (10%), partial responses in 8 (40%) and stable disease in 9 (45%). Local progression-free survival median value was 5.7 months. Overall, no major adverse effects were observed.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study indicates that deep percutaneous ECT can produce a significant pain reduction and a high LDCR in different tumor lesions, for anatomical site or histotype. In particular, ECT has demonstrated to be effective in various histotypes and deep-seated tumor lesions never treated before by this approach giving a new chance to physicians for reducing oncological pain in patients not eligible to other therapeutic routes. The innovative peculiarity of our study was the successful application of deep percutaneous ECT on adrenal metastasis, malignant pleural mesothelioma, uterine leiomyosarcoma and the uncommon case of a male müllerian tumor.
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2020|