Treatment of early-stage Hodgkin's disease with four cycles of ABVD followed by adjuvant radiotherapy: Analysis of efficacy and long-term toxicity

E. Brusamolino, F. Lunghi, E. Orlandi, C. Astori, F. Passamonti, C. Barate, G. Pagnucco, A. Baio, P. Franchini, M. Lazzarino, C. Bernasconi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Objectives. The use of combined modality therapy in early-stage Hodgkin's disease can spare staging laparotomy and reduces the risk of relapse compared to radiation alone. This paper reports on the efficacy and long-term events of a combined modality approach consisting of a brief course of chemotherapy followed by adjuvant radiotherapy, without laparotomy, in early-stage Hodgkin's disease. Design and Methods. This study included 78 patients with Hodgkin's disease (20 in stage I and 58 in stage II); 60% had mediastinal enlargement (12% had bulky disease) and 5% had subdiaphragmatic disease. Their median age was 33 years (range: 15-64) and median follow-up 60 months. The treatment program consisted of four cycles of ABVD followed by adjuvant radiation to involved sites (43 patients) or involved and contiguous sites of disease (35 patients); radiation doses ranged from 30 to 36 Gy to uninvolved and involved sites, respectively; bulky disease received up to 44 Gy. Gonadal function in women was assessed by hormonal tests and evaluation of menses; young men were given the opportunity to have their semen cryopreserved. Results. The treatment program was completed in a median of 6.2 months (range: 5-10). The complete remission rate was 88% after 4 courses of ABVD and 98.7% after adjuvant RT. The 5-year relapse-free survival was 97% and overall survival 98%; three patients died, on of disease progression and two of small cell lung carcinoma. Long-term events included three cases of pulmonary fibrosis with symptomatic interstitial disease, one case of dilated cardiomyopathy with cardiac failure (all had received mediastinal radiation) and four cases of dysthyroidism. Fertility was preserved in young women, with three subsequent normal pregnancies. Second neoplasms included two small cell lung carcinomas and one breast carcinoma. Interpretation and Conclusions. In early-stage Hodgkin's disease, four cycles of ABVD followed by adjuvant radiotherapy produced a 5-year overall survival of 98%. Prolonged monitoring for therapy-related long-term complications is mandatory in these potentially curable patients. (C) 2000, Ferrata Storti Foundation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1032-1039
Number of pages8
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • ABVD
  • Combined modality therapy
  • Early-stage
  • Hodgkin's disease
  • Long-term toxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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