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Cancer Treat Rep. 1985 May;69(5):483-8.

Etoposide and cisplatin with or without bleomycin as first-line chemotherapy for patients with small-volume metastases of testicular nonseminoma.


Between December 1981 and September 1982, a phase II study of etoposide and cisplatin was carried out in 17 patients with small-volume metastases of testicular nonseminoma to see whether the toxicity associated with bleomycin could be avoided without loss of therapeutic effect. Of 16 evaluable patients followed for 13-23 months (median, 18.5), four failed to achieve complete remission and three had disease progression. Conversely, all 18 equivalent patients treated with bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin between January 1981 and November 1982 (observation time, 12-34 months; median, 25) achieved complete remission and have been continuously disease-free since treatment (P = 0.07). The results suggest that bleomycin contributes significantly to the combination chemotherapy for testicular nonseminoma, and although its omission led to a marked reduction in toxicity, loss of therapeutic activity was also apparent. Prolongation of the intervals between cycles of etoposide and cisplatin from 3 to 4 weeks may significantly reduce the effectiveness of the two-drug combination, whereas no evidence of this was seen in patients treated with bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin.

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