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Thalidomide plus dexamethasone is an effective salvage regimen for myeloma patients relapsing after autologous transplant

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Palumbo A, Falco P, Ambrosini MT, Petrucci MT, Musto P, Caravita T, Pregno P, Bertola A, Cavallo F, Ciccone G, Boccadoro M. Thalidomide plus dexamethasone is an effective salvage regimen for myeloma patients relapsing after autologous transplant.

Eur J Haematol 2005: 75: 391–395. ¬© Blackwell Munksgaard 2005. Abstract: 

Objectives: High-dose therapy followed by autologous transplant (AT) is the effective induction treatment for newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) patients. The best salvage therapy has not been defined; treatment options include thalidomide plus dexamethasone (TD), AT and conventional chemotherapy (CC). The aim of the study was to define the best treatment option for patients relapsing after AT. Patients and Methods: We compared the outcome of 90 MM patients treated at diagnosis with AT and then salvaged with TD (43 patients), AT (28 patients) or CC (19 patients). The major prognostic factors, the median times between diagnosis and start of salvage treatment and the progression-free survival (PFS) from diagnosis were similar among the three groups. Results: The response rate was higher after salvage AT and after TD, and lower after CC (P < 0.001). TD significantly prolonged PFS from first relapse (P < 0.0001). Median PFS was 20.3 months after TD, 9 months after AT, and 4.5 months after CC. Overall survival (OS) from first relapse was significantly improved by TD (median OS 55.5 months) but not by AT (15 months) or CC (27.5 months) (P = 0.008). Multivariate analysis indicated that TD and age were the only independent risk factors associated with improved outcome. Conclusion: TD improved PFS and OS in myeloma patients relapsing after AT.
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Keywords: autotransplant; conventional chemotherapy; multiple myeloma; salvage therapy; thalidomide

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Divisione di Ematologia dell'Università di Torino 2: the Italian Multiple Myeloma Study Group 3: Epidemiologia dei Tumori, Azienda Ospedaliera S. Giovanni Battista, Ospedale Molinette, Torino, Italy

Publication date: November 1, 2005

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