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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 37

of 'Systemic therapy for advanced cholangiocarcinoma'

Weekly 24 h infusion of high-dose 5-fluorouracil and leucovorin in patients with biliary tract carcinomas.
Chen JS, Jan YY, Lin YC, Wang HM, Chang WC, Liau CT
Anticancer Drugs. 1998;9(5):393.
From October 1995 to June 1997, 19 chemotherapy-naive patients with pathology-proven locally advanced or metastatic biliary tract carcinomas (BTC) were enrolled. The regimen consisted of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) 2600 mg/m2 and leucovorin (LV) 150 mg by weekly 24 h infusion for 6 weeks and followed by a 2 week break. The treatment was terminated if disease progressed, the patient refused or unacceptable toxicity occurred. All patients required a Port-A catheter insertion and were treated at outpatient clinics by portable infusion pumps. There were 12 males and seven females with a median age of 62 years (range 45-77). The primary tumor sites were nine intrahepatic cholangiocarcinomas (CC), three perihilar CC, one distal BTC and six gallbladder cancers. A total of 179 chemotherapy sessions were given with a mean of 9.5 (range 2-18). Eighteen patients were evaluable for response. The response rates were: 33% (six of 18) partial response (PR), 39% (seven of 18) stable disease (SD) and 28% (five of 18) progressive disease (PD). All of the patients were evaluable for toxicity. The most common toxicities were mild fatigue (nine of 19, 47%), loss of appetite (nine of 19, 47%), skin hyperpigmentation (five of 19, 26%) and diarrhea (two of 19, 11%). Only one patient had grade IV myelotoxicity with sepsis but without treatment-related death. The median time to progression was 4 months. The overall median survivaltime was 7.0 months. The median survival time of the PR was not reached, SD was 8.0 months and PD 3.5 months. In conclusion, weekly high-dose 5-FU with LV by 24 h infusion in an outpatient setting for patients with BTC is effective, only mildly toxic and deserves further study.
Department of Internal Medicine, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.