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Oncologist. 2003;8 Suppl 3:39-45.

Modifications to therapy for multiple myeloma: pegylated liposomal Doxorubicin in combination with vincristine, reduced-dose dexamethasone, and thalidomide.

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1
Cleveland Clinic Myeloma Research Program, Cleveland, Ohio 44195, USA. husseim@ccf.org

Abstract

The combination of vincristine, doxorubicin, and dexamethasone is an effective treatment for multiple myeloma that produces a more rapid response than other regimens, probably a function of the high-dose, intense steroid schedule. However, vincristine/doxorubicin/dexamethasone administration requires a 96-hour continuous infusion delivered via a central venous catheter, which necessitates hospitalization in a large number of patients and may increase the risk for infection. Moreover, the high dosages of corticosteroids required with this regimen can cause substantial toxicity. Therefore, a number of modifications to the regimen have been evaluated in an effort to improve its tolerability and efficacy. These include replacing doxorubicin with pegylated liposomal doxorubicin and using a reduced frequency of dexamethasone, and, later, the addition of thalidomide. The results of an ongoing study demonstrated that this latest regimen (including thalidomide) is associated with an improved response rate and a higher quality of response compared with previous regimens in patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma. This modified regimen is well tolerated when prophylactic and supportive measures are incorporated. Although additional follow-up is required to determine the effect on survival, this modified regimen has significant potential in the management of advanced myeloma.

PMID:
14671227
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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