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MINERVA UROLOGICA E NEFROLOGICA

A Journal on Nephrology and Urology


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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2009 March;61(1):1-8

language: English

Palliative chemotherapy with gemcitabine, paclitaxel, and cisplatin as first-line treatment following gemcitabine monotherapy for patients with transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium

Ecke T. H. 1, Gerullis H. 2, Bartel P. 1, Koch S. 3, Ruttloff J. 1

1 Department of Urology, HELIOS Hospital Bad Saarow, Germany
2 West German Cancer Center (WTZ) University of Essen, Germany
3 Institute of Pathology, HELIOS Hospital Bad Saarow, Germany


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Aim. Chemotherapeutic agents are active in transitional cell cancer of the urothelium, and combinations have shown promising results. The objective of this study was to evaluate the palliative chemotherapy with gemcitabine, paclitaxel, and cisplatin for transitional cell carcinoma.
Methods. Thirty-four patients with advanced transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium were treated between 2000 and 2007. All patients received chemotherapy with intravenous gemcitabine at a dose of 1 000 mg/m2 on days I and VIII, intravenous paclitaxel at a dose of 80 mg/m2 on days I and VIII, and intravenous cisplatin at a dose of 50 mg/m2 on day II. Treatment courses were repeated every 21 days. After completion of four to six courses in this regimen an application of intravenous gemcitabine at a dose of 1 000 mg/m2 followed repeating every 28 days.
Results. Twelve patients (35.3%) had ≥1 visceral sites of metastases. Twenty two patients (64.7%) had achieved objective responses to treatment (29.4% complete responses). The median actuarial survival was 18.5 months, and the actuarial one-year and two-year survival rates were 56% and 26% respectively. After a median follow-up of 16.3 months, 18 patients remained alive. The median progression-free survival was 7 months. Median survival time for patients with ECOG status 0, 1, and 2 was 45, 12, and 10.5 months respectively. Grade 3-4 neutropenia occurred in 41.2% of patients.
Conclusion. The combination of gemcitabine, paclitaxel, and cisplatin is a highly effective and tolerable regimen for patients with advanced transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium. This treatment should be considered as a suitable option that deserves further prospective evaluation. ECOG performance status and visceral metastases are important predictive factors for survival.

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