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Topotecan: An evolving option in the treatment of relapsed small cell lung cancer

Authors Jennifer Garst

Published 15 January 2008 Volume 2007:3(6) Pages 1087—1095


Jennifer Garst
Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina, USA
Abstract: The topoisomerase I inhibitor topotecan is the only single-agent therapy approved for the treatment of recurrent small cell lung cancer (SCLC). Many patients with recurrent SCLC may be predisposed to treatment-related adverse events because of the presence of comorbidities such as advanced age, renal impairment, or extensive prior therapy. In this setting, disease stabilization is considered a treatment benefit, and quality-of-life effects and toxicity profiles of treatments should be considered. The approved regimen of topotecan 1.5 mg/m2 on days 1 to 5 of a 21-day cycle is active and has generally mild nonhematologic toxicity and a well-established hematologic toxicity profile characterized by reversible, manageable, and noncumulative neutropenia. Alternative dosing and treatment schedules may lower the incidence of hematologic toxicities while maintaining antitumor efficacy in this patient population. Therefore, topotecan may provide physicians with an effective and versatile therapeutic option for the treatment of patients with relapsed SCLC.
Keywords: relapsed cancer, review, small cell lung cancer, topotecan

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