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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 13

of 'Use of granulocyte colony stimulating factors in adult patients with chemotherapy-induced neutropenia and conditions other than acute leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, and hematopoietic cell transplantation'

Meta-analysis: effect of prophylactic hematopoietic colony-stimulating factors on mortality and outcomes of infection.
Sung L, Nathan PC, Alibhai SM, Tomlinson GA, Beyene J
Ann Intern Med. 2007;147(6):400.
BACKGROUND: Benefits of prophylactic hematopoietic colony-stimulating factors (CSFs) in adults and children receiving cancer chemotherapy or undergoing stem-cell transplantation (SCT) are unclear.
PURPOSE: To determine whether prophylactic CSFs decrease mortality, infections, and febrile neutropenia more than does placebo or no therapy in patients with cancer and in patients undergoing SCT.
DATA SOURCES: Electronic searches of Ovid MEDLINE and EMBASE from inception until April 2007 and of the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials until the second quarter of 2006.
STUDY SELECTION: We selected 148 trials that were reported in any language that randomly assigned patients to CSFs or to either placebo or no therapy. Prophylactic CSFs were given concurrently with or after initiation of chemotherapy.
DATA EXTRACTION: Two reviewers independently extracted data onto standardized forms.
DATA SYNTHESIS: Short-term all-cause mortality appeared to be similar between the prophylactic CSF and the control groups (7.6% vs. 8.0%; relative risk, 0.95 [95% CI, 0.84 to 1.08]; absolute risk reduction, 0.4% [CI, -0.5% to 1.4%]). Risks for infection-related death with CSFs and placebo or no therapy were 3.1% and 3.8%, respectively (relative risk, 0.82 [CI, 0.66 to 1.02]; absolute risk reduction, 0.8% [CI, 0.0% to 1.5%]). Use of CSFs reduced the following more than did placebo or no therapy: documented infections (median rate, 38.9% vs. 43.1%; rate ratio, 0.85 [CI, 0.79 to 0.92]), microbiologically documented infections (median rate, 23.5% vs. 28.6%; rate ratio, 0.86 [CI, 0.77 to 0.96]), and episodes of febrile neutropenia (median rate, 25.3% vs. 44.2%; rate ratio, 0.71 [CI, 0.63 to 0.80]).
LIMITATIONS: Trial designs, including assessments of infections, and participants were heterogeneous. Estimates of mortality effects were imprecise.
CONCLUSIONS: Prophylactic CSFs may have little or no effect on mortality but do decrease rates of infection in patients receiving cancer chemotherapy or those undergoing SCT.
Division of Haematology/Oncology, The University of Toronto, The Hospital for Sick Children, and University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. lillian.sung@sickkids.ca