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Leuk Lymphoma. 2007 Oct;48(10):1931-9.

The natural history of fludarabine-refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients who fail alemtuzumab or have bulky lymphadenopathy.

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Department of Leukemia and Stem Cell Transplantation, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas 77030, USA.


The natural history and outcome of salvage treatment for patients with fludarabine-refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia who are either refractory to alemtuzumab ("double-refractory") or ineligible for alemtuzumab due to bulky lymphadenopathy ("bulky fludarabine-refractory") have not been described. We present the outcomes of 99 such patients (double-refractory n = 58, bulky fludarabine-refractory n = 41) undergoing their first salvage treatment at our center. Patients received a variety of salvage regimens including monoclonal antibodies (n = 15), single-agent cytotoxic drugs (n = 14), purine analogue combination regimens (n = 21), intensive combination chemotherapy (n = 36), allogeneic stem cell transplantation (SCT; n = 4), or other therapies (n = 9). Overall response to first salvage therapy other than SCT was 23%, with no complete responses. All four patients who underwent SCT as first salvage achieved complete remission. Early death (within 8 weeks of commencing first salvage) occurred in 13% of patients, and 54% of patients experienced a major infection during therapy. Overall survival was 9 months, with hemoglobin < 11 g/dL (hazard ratio 2.3), hepatomegaly (hazard ratio 2.4), and performance status > or = 2 (hazard ratio 1.9) being significant independent predictors of inferior survival.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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