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Survival analysis in second-line and third-line chemotherapy with irinotecan followed by topotecan or topotecan followed by irinotecan for extensive-stage small-cell lung cancer patients: a single-center retrospective study

Authors Aktas G, Kus T, Kalender M, Sevinc A, Camci C, Kul S

Received 27 November 2015

Accepted for publication 10 February 2016

Published 1 April 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 1921—1926


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Wei An

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Min Li

Gokmen Aktas,1 Tulay Kus,1 Mehmet Emin Kalender,1 Alper Sevinc,1 Celaletdin Camci,1 Seval Kul2

1Division of Medical Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, Gaziantep Oncology Hospital, Gaziantep University, Gaziantep, Turkey; 2Department of Biostatistics, School of Medicine, Gaziantep University, Gaziantep, Turkey

Purpose: The number of patients who make it to receive third-line chemotherapy is increasing owing to the improvements in adverse-event management of chemotherapy for small-cell lung cancer (SCLC). Sequencing of optimal treatment for SCLC is still a challenge for oncologists. In this paper, we aim to present a different approach to the treatment of SCLC.
Methods: Between January 2008 and July 2014, all patients diagnosed with extensive-stage SCLC and treated with third-line chemotherapy at Gaziantep University Oncology Hospital were analyzed retrospectively. Disease control rates and progression-free survival (PFS) for first-, second-, and third-line chemotherapy, and overall survival (OS) were recorded. Survival analysis was calculated by using Kaplan–Meier method.
Results: A total of 255 SCLC patients were screened, and 25 of those patients who received third-line chemotherapy were included in this study. Median age was 57±10.131 years (range: 39–74 years). Disease control rates at first-, second-, and third-line chemotherapy were 92%, 68%, and 44%, respectively. Fourteen patients received irinotecan followed by topotecan, and eleven patients received topotecan followed by irinotecan. Second-line median PFS was statistically better in patients treated with irinotecan at second-line compared with those treated with topotecan (21 vs 12 weeks, P=0.018). Comparison of third-line median PFS of the two groups was not statistically significant (14 vs 12 weeks, P=0.986). Median OS was not statistically significant in patients who received irinotecan followed by topotecan vs those who received topotecan followed by irinotecan (18 vs 14 months, P=0.112).
Conclusion: Sequential monotherapy with topotecan and irinotecan provides a considerable contribution to OS, and second-line irinotecan showed a better PFS, despite a similar OS, compared with topotecan.

Keywords: small-cell lung cancer, irinotecan, topotecan, third-line chemotherapy

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