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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 56

of 'Overview of the risk factors, pathology, and clinical manifestations of lung cancer'

Anemia profiles in patients with lung cancer: what have we learned from the European Cancer Anaemia Survey (ECAS)?
Kosmidis P, Krzakowski M, ECAS Investigators
Lung Cancer. 2005;50(3):401.
The often-aggressive therapy, including platinum-based regimens, required to treat lung cancer patients results in a significant risk for anemia in this population. Results of the recent European Cancer Anaemia Survey (ECAS) showed that, at enrollment, 37.6% (753/2002) of lung cancer patients were anemic; rates by cancer treatment were 50.0% on concomitant chemotherapy/radiotherapy, 39.0% on chemotherapy, 31.7% on radiotherapy, 38.6% on combination treatment, and 30.7%, on no treatment. At enrollment, of 605 patients receiving platinum therapy, 50.1% were anemic versus 30.6% of 1252 receiving nonplatinum regimens. During ECAS, 83.3% of lung cancer patients who received chemotherapy were anemic at some time, with the prevalence of anemia in platinum-treated patients increasing progressively from 23.5% at Cycle 1 to 77.3% at Cycle 6 (corresponding values for nonplatinum-treated patients, 32.9% and 57.7%). However, only 47% of anemic patients received anemia treatment, which, when provided, often was not initiated until hemoglobin (Hb) levels were relatively low (initiation Hb: epoetin, 9.1 g/dL; transfusion, 8.5 g/dL). Logistical analysis of ECAS data identified treatment with platinum, female sex, and initial Hb level as risk factors for anemia in lung cancer patients. Given the potential adverse consequences of anemia in lung cancer patients, including diminished quality of life (QOL), it is advisable that treatment patterns for anemia management, especially in regard to anemia monitoring and Hb level used to initiate treatment, be reviewed and optimized, with the goal of optimizing overall patient care. Also, anemia risk factors should be considered, which may help clinicians identify lung cancer patients particularly at risk for this problem, allowing the planning and initiation of appropriate treatment for effective and timely anemia management, thus preserving patient QOL.
Medical Oncology Department, Hygeia Hospital, 2 An. Tsoha&Vasilissis Sofias Street, Athens 11521, Greece. parkosmi@otenet.gr