Chemotherapy – Ospedale ‘Villa Scassi’ – Treatment Details
Mesothelioma affects people in nearly every country where asbestos is mined, processed, and used in goods. Therefore, mesothelioma, the cancer caused by asbestos can be found in these same countries.
Because mesothelioma generally has such a poor prognosis, when a promising treatment is discovered in one country it is often tried in many others. Such was the case with the chemotherapy drug combination of pemetrexed (Alimta) and carboplatin. This treatment was spearheaded in the United States, and when it showed promised, it became a clinical trial in many other countries.
This is an example from Italy in 2008. The Department of Oncology at Novi Ligure Hospital in Novi Ligure Italy tested this chemo combination of pemetrexed and carboplatin in pleural mesothelioma patients.
Seventy-six patients were treated and their median age was 65. Their median survival was 14 months. Side effects included blood toxicity. In some patients it was severe.
The researchers concluded that “This combination of carboplatin and pemetrexed is moderately active and the toxicity is acceptable.”
Patients: This phase II study involved seventy-six patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma. The median age was 65, ranging from 40 to 75 years. The majority, 71%, were men.
Treatment: All patients were treated with the chemotherapy drugs carboplatin and pemetrexed.
Toxicity: Grade 4 hematological toxicities were reported in 5 patients. These were anemia, thrombocytopenia, and neutropenia. Grade 3 toxicities included hematological toxicities, gastrointestinal, mucositis, diarrhea, astenia, fever, and conjunctivitis.
Results: The median overall survival was 14 months, ranging from 1.8 to over 33 months.
Correspondence: Dr. M. Mencoboni
See all conventional treatment results for mesothelioma.