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Ann Oncol. 2004 Feb;15(2):270-5.

Comparison of MOPP versus ABVD as salvage therapy in patients who relapse after radiation therapy alone for Hodgkin's disease.

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  • 1Radiation Oncology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA, USA.



The aim of this study was to determine salvage outcome in patients with Hodgkin's disease who relapse after radiation therapy, and to compare the efficacy of mechlorethamine, Oncovin, procarbazine and prednisone (MOPP) versus Adriamycin, bleomycin, vinblastine and dacarbazine (ABVD) as salvage treatment.


One hundred patients with Hodgkin's disease (97 with stage I-II disease at presentation) who relapsed after radiation therapy alone were salvaged with either MOPP or ABVD. Freedom from second relapse (FFSR) and overall survival (OS) were determined, and prognostic factors for salvage outcome were evaluated.


The median follow-up time since salvage therapy was 12 years. The 10-year FFSR and OS rates were 70% and 89%, respectively. Forty-one patients were salvaged with MOPP and 59 received ABVD. The type of salvage chemotherapy did not significantly influence FFSR or OS. Age >50 years at initial diagnosis was the only significant predictor for an inferior FFSR and OS on both univariate and multivariate analyses.


The two salvage regimens of MOPP and ABVD had similar efficacy in this group of patients with predominantly early-stage disease at initial radiation therapy. The inferior salvage outcome in patients aged >50 years is a contributing factor to the overall poor prognosis of patients presenting with Hodgkin's disease at an older age.

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