, Volume 73, Issue 2, pp 251-257

Long-Term Survival and Late-Onset Complications of Cancer Patients Treated With High-Dose Chemotherapy Followed by Autologous Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplantation

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The antitumor effect of high-dose chemotherapy (HDC) followed by autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (auto-PBSCT) is considered superior to that of conventional chemotherapy. However, the long-term benefits of this strategy in Japan remain unclear.Therefore, in this study, 109 cancer patients enrolled between 1989 and 1999 were treated with HDC and auto-PBSCT. Patients were evaluated for long-term survival and late-onset complications, including secondary malignancy. The mean number of CD34+ cells harvested per apheresis was larger in the group receiving high-dose cytosine arabinoside or high-dose etoposide plus granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) than in the group receiving conventional chemotherapy plus G-CSF. The 5-year overall survival rates for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma patients in first complete remission (CR) (83.2%), second or subsequent CR (74.1%), or first partial remission (PR) (66.7%) at the time of transplantation were significantly higher than those with no remission (35.7%) at the time of transplantation (first CR,P < .05; second or subsequent CR,P < .05; first PR,P < .05). The 5-year overall survival (OS) rates for breast cancer was 40.8%, and the disease-free survival rate was extremely low (8.8%). The 5-year OS rates for chemotherapy-sensitive and chemotherapy-resistant diseases at the time of transplantation were 32.7% and 35.7%, respectively, a difference that was not considered significant. The 5-year OS for germ cell tumor was 80.0%, and the disease-free survival rate was 77.9%. The rate of therapy-related death was 8.2%. The occurrence rate of secondary malignancy was 0.9%. Late-onset complications were observed in 4 cases (glomerulonephritis, interstitial pneumonitis, ulcerative colitis, and acute myelogenous leukemia). At 3.7%, the occurrence rate was not very high, but most complications of auto-PBSCT were life threatening and interfered with patients’ quality of life. A careful follow-up is required for at least 2 years after transplantation, because the mean occurrence time of late-onset complications is 16.7 months posttransplantation.