Efficacy and safety of liposomal cytarabine in children with primary CNS tumours with leptomeningeal involvement
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To assess the efficacy and safety of liposomal cytarabine in the treatment of de novo and relapsed leptomeningeal involvement in children with primary CNS tumours.
Data from clinical charts were entered into a database for consecutive unselected patients (n=20) from nine Spanish centres. Diagnosis of leptomeningeal involvement was confirmed by cytology, MRI and/or CT scan. The dose of liposomal cytarabine used varied from 20 to 50 mg, by age.
There were 8 females and 12 males, mean age 7.3 years (range 8 months to 18 years). The tumours were: 10 medulloblastomas, 4 ependymomas, 3 primitive neuroectodermal tumours and 3 other tumours. Fourteen had undergone previous chemotherapy and 12 radiotherapy. Nine received concurrent chemotherapy and 2 concurrent radiotherapy. Median follow-up was 244.5 days (range 12–869). Patients received a median of 5 doses (range 1–9) of liposomal cytarabine. A neurological response (complete or partial) was seen in 11/19 (58%) and a cytological response in 7/10 (64%). Median time to neurological progression exceeded 180 days (range 12–869). Adverse effects were reported in 11/20 patients, but none was grade IV.
Liposomal cytarabine was well tolerated and efficacious in this patient group, but prospective randomised trials are needed.
KeywordsLeptomeningeal disease Brain tumour Intrathecal drug Paediatric
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