, Volume 87, Issue 5, pp 345-352,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 12 Feb 2008

Practical recommendations on the use of lenalidomide in the management of myelodysplastic syndromes


Lenalidomide, an oral immunomodulatory agent, has received approval in the USA from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the management of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) classified by the International Prognostic Scoring System (IPSS) as low risk or intermediate-1 risk and with a deletion 5q (del(5q)) cytogenetic abnormality. Although some patients with del(5q) have a relatively good prognosis, all del(5q) patients will become transfusion-dependent at some point during the course of their disease. The results of two clinical trials in more than 160 patients with MDS have demonstrated clear therapeutic benefits of lenalidomide, with >60% of patients achieving independence from transfusion during therapy, irrespective of age, prior therapy, sex, or disease-risk assessment. The recommendations presented in this review will aid the safe administration of lenalidomide for the treatment of patients with low-risk or intermediate-1-risk MDS and a del(5q) cytogenetic abnormality, and they will help physicians avoid unnecessary dose reduction or interruption, thus assuring the best efficacy for patients.