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Am J Clin Oncol. 2000 Jun;23(3):292-6.

A phase III study of high-dose intensification without hematopoietic progenitor cells support for patients with high-risk primary breast carcinoma.

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  • 1Ottawa Regional Cancer Centre, Ontario, Canada.


Patients with more than nine ipsilateral lymph node involvement or inflammatory breast cancer have a 5-year survival rate of approximately 50%. We studied the efficacy of high-dose intensification, comparing it with the standard dose chemotherapy for patients with high-risk primary breast cancer. Patients with inflammatory breast cancer or more than nine ipsilateral lymph node involvement without evidence of distant metastasis were randomized to receive either standard dose 5-fluorouracil, doxorubicin, and cyclophosphamide (FAC) every 3 weeks for nine courses (control) or six courses of FAC followed by two courses of cyclophosphamide (5.25 g/m2), etoposide (1,500 mg/m2), and cisplatin (165 mg/m2) (HDCVP). The study was terminated in 1998 because of slow accrual of patients. Forty-six patients were entered in the study. At 4 years, the overall survival was 72.8% (SE 11.9%) and 61.7% (SE 12.4%), and disease-free survival were 45.5% (SE 12.3%) and 33.7% (SE 11.9%) for the control and HDCVP groups, respectively (p = 0.757 and 0.720). With the small number of patients in our study, a small overall survival benefit of high-dose intensification compared with the standard therapy cannot be excluded. However, any substantial benefit is unlikely.

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