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J Vet Intern Med. 1999 Sep-Oct;13(5):491-7.

Prednisone and vinblastine chemotherapy for canine mast cell tumor--41 cases (1992-1997).

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Department of Medical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 53706, USA.


Forty-one dogs with mast cell tumors (MCTs) were treated with oral prednisone and injectable vinblastine (VBL), both in the adjuvant setting (23 dogs) and in dogs with gross disease (18 dogs). Adverse effects were noted in 20% (8/41) of the patients, usually after the 1st dose of VBL. Adverse effects were considered mild in 6, and severe, necessitating treatment discontinuation, in 2 (5%). Overall response rate in the evaluable dogs with gross disease was 47% (7/15), consisting of 5 complete responses and 2 partial responses. Median response duration was 154 days (24 to >645 days). As adjuvant therapy to incomplete surgical resection, prednisone and VBL conferred a 57% 1- and 2-year disease-free rate. Median survival time (MST) for the entire patient population was not reached with a median follow-up of 573 days; however, the MST for dogs with grade III MCT was 331 days, with 45% of dogs alive at 1 and 2 years. This is an apparent improvement over historical survival data employing surgery alone. Upon univariate analysis, significant prognostic factors (P < .05) for survival included presence of a locally recurrent tumor, presence of gross disease, argyrophilic nucleolar organizer region frequency, lymph node status, histologic grade, previous chemotherapy, and ulceration of the tumor. Similar criteria were significant when analyzed for time to treatment failure. Response to therapy was also predictive of survival in the gross disease group. Upon multivariate analysis, histologic grade (P = .012) and presence of a locally recurrent tumor (P < .001) were significant factors for survival.

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