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Second-line afatinib administration in an elderly patient with squamous cell carcinoma

Authors Hohenforst-Schmidt W, Zarogoulidis P, Steinheimer M, Benhassen N, Sardeli C, Stalikas N, Toitou M, Huang H

Received 21 December 2016

Accepted for publication 22 February 2017

Published 20 March 2017 Volume 2017:13 Pages 341—343


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Wolfgang Hohenforst-Schmidt,1 Paul Zarogoulidis,2 Michael Steinheimer,1 Naim Benhassen,3 Chrysanthi Sardeli,4 Nikos Stalikas,2 Melpomeni Toitou,2 Haidong Huang5

1Sana Clinic Group Franken, Department of Cardiology/Pulmonology/Intensive Care/Nephrology, “Hof” Clinics, University of Erlangen, Hof, Germany; 2Pulmonary Department – Oncology Unit, “G Papanikolaou” General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece; 3Medical Clinic I, “Fuerth” Hospital, University of Erlangen, Fuerth, Germany; 4Department of Pharmacology & Clinical Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece; 5Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Changhai Hospital/First Affiliated Hospital of the Secondary Military Medical University, Shanghai, China

Introduction: The majority of cases of lung cancer are still diagnosed at a late stage. At this stage, palliative therapeutic options including nonspecific cytotoxic drugs, targeted therapy, or immunotherapy can be utilized. In 2016, immunotherapy was approved in Europe for squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. Moreover, afatinib was also approved as second-line therapy for squamous cell carcinoma.
Case report: This article presents a case of a 76-year-old male with squamous cell carcinoma who received nab-paclitaxel as first-line therapy, and his treatment was switched to the tyrosine kinase inhibitor afatinib (40 mg) after disease progression with left lung atelectasis. After receiving afatinib for only 28 days, the atelectasis resolved. No adverse effects were observed from the afatinib therapy.
Discussion: In this case, afatinib 40 mg proved to be an effective alternative treatment for an elderly patient. Treatment choice should be based on the performance status of the patient, cost-effectiveness, and drug treatment guidelines.

Keywords: lung cancer, EGFR, afatinib

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