Results of a retrospective analysis of gemcitabine as a second-line treatment after chemoradiotherapy and maintenance chemotherapy using 5-fluorouracil in patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer
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- Taira, K., Boku, N., Fukutomi, A. et al. J Gastroenterol (2008) 43: 875. doi:10.1007/s00535-008-2236-z
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Many studies of concurrent chemoradiation therapy with 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) for locally advanced pancreatic cancer have been reported with a median survival time of approximately 10 months. Recently, gemcitabine (GEM) has been administered immediately after chemoradiation. The clinical outcome of chemoradiation therapy in conjunction with 5-FU and second-line chemotherapy with GEM after disease progression has not been clarified.
Patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer were treated with concurrent radiation therapy (1.8 Gy/fraction; total dose, 50.4 Gy) with 5-FU (200 mg/m2 every day) until disease progression, followed by GEM (1000 mg/m2, days 1, 8, 15, and every 4 weeks) as second-line therapy.
Of the 18 patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer who received chemoradiation therapy with 5-FU, there were three partial responses, giving a response rate of 17%. The median time to progression was 170 days. The median survival time was 443 days. During chemoradiation therapy, the incidences of grade 3 or 4 anorexia, nausea, mucositis, and gastric ulcer were 33%, 22%, 17%, and 17%, respectively. Sixteen patients received second-line chemotherapy with GEM, of whom one patient had a partial response. The median time to progression from the initiation of GEM was 113 days, and median overall survival time was 231 days. Major toxicities were hematological toxicities: grade 3 or 4 leukopenia in 75% and anemia in 31%.
The treatment strategy with concurrent chemoradiation and maintenance chemotherapy with 5-FU followed by second-line chemotherapy with GEM may be an option for locally advanced pancreatic cancer.