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J Clin Oncol. 1983 May;1(5):337-44.

Long-term hepatic arterial infusion of 5-fluorodeoxyuridine for liver metastases using an implantable infusion pump.


Twenty-one patients with liver metastases of various histologies (predominantly colorectal carcinoma) underwent Infusaid pump implantation for long-term hepatic arterial 5-fluorodeoxyuridine (5-FUdR) infusion. Patients received 5-FUdR infusion on a 2-wk cycle alternating with a 2-wk saline--heparin infusion. A dosage of 0.2-0.3 mg/kg/day (average 0.23 mg/kg/day) was infused for a cumulative 5-FUdR administration of 1940 days. Six patients (29%) responded to therapy (five colorectal, one carcinoid); median response duration was 6 mo. Median survival for the treated group was 17 mo from diagnosis of liver metastases and 13 mo from pump implantation. Median survival among the six responding patients was 15 mo from diagnosis of liver metastases and 11 mo from pump implantation. Comparison of survival from the diagnosis of liver metastases of the treated group to ten patients found ineligible for the study by virtue of extrahepatic metastases revealed no significant difference in median (18 mo for ineligible group) or overall survival. However, median survival for the treated group after pump implantation (13 mo) was significantly better than the median survival of the ineligible group after evaluation for this study (4 mo). Toxicities of therapy included fatigue, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, toxic hepatitis, epigastric pain, and diarrhea. No patients died of toxicity, but six patients required hospitalization for management of pain or vomiting. No serious technical complications developed in any patient except separation of the infusion catheter at its junction with the pump in one patient, necessitating pump replacement for continuation of therapy. These survival data suggest identification of new anticancer agents for hepatic arterial infusion.

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