Postsurgical adjuvant chemotherapy of stage II breast carcinoma with or without crossover to a non-cross-resistant regimen: A cancer and leukemia group B study

M. Perloff, L. Norton, A. H. Korzun, W. C. Wood, R. W. Carey, A. Gottlieb, J. C. Aust, A. Bank, R. T. Silver, F. Saleh, G. P. Canellos, M. C. Perry, R. B. Weiss, J. F. Holland

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49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: To compare two cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, fluorouracil, vincristine, and prednisone (CMFVP) regimens with a doxorubicin-based regimen-vinblastine, doxorubicin, thiotepa, and Halotestin (Upjohn, Kalamazoo, MI) (VATH)-in patients with stage II node-positive breast carcinoma. Methods: Nine hundred forty-five women were treated with a 6-week induction course of CMFVP. They were then randomized to receive one of two consolidation CMFVP regimens: 6-week courses or 2-week courses. Following completion of CMFVP consolidation, patients were again randomized to either continue the CMFVP regimen or to receive six escalating doses of VATH. Results: Among all patients, with a median follow-up time of 11.5 years, there is no statistically significant difference in disease-free survival (DFS) between the two consolidation CMFVP regimens. VATH intensification treatment is statistically significantly superior to CMFVP in terms of DFS (P = .0040). For patients with one to three involved nodes, there is currently no significant difference between VATH and CMFVP; however, among those with four or more positive lymph nodes, there is a significant difference in favor of VATH (P = .0037). There is also improved overall survival with VATH (P = .043; median, > 14 years v 10 years). This difference is also statistically significant in patients with four or more involved lymph nodes, among postmenopausal patients, and among postmenopausal estrogen receptor-positive patients. Conclusion: Chemotherapy with crossover to escalating doses of VATH following CMFVP was well tolerated and effective. Inauguration of VATH as a treatment intensification at the eighth month produced a major increase in relapse-free and overall survival. The observation that sensitivity to VATH is retained so long after mastectomy raises questions about the proper duration of adjuvant chemotherapy and lends support to further investigation of crossover designs in future trials of postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy regimens.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1589-1598
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume14
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1996
Externally publishedYes

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