High-dose cisplatin for locally advanced or metastatic head and neck cancer. A phase II pilot study.
High-dose cisplatin (40 mg/m2 every day X5) was administered to 14 patients (11 men, three women) with locally advanced or metastatic head and neck cancer not curable by surgery or refractory to previous chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. All 14 patients were evaluable for toxicity; one patient was inevaluable for response due to early death. A total of 24 courses of therapy were administered. The dose-limiting toxicity was myelosuppression with 73% of patients experiencing Grade III or IV neutropenia. Grade II or above thrombocytopenia occurred in 30% of the patients. Renal and neurologic toxicity was minimal. Two patients experienced laryngeal edema from vigorous hydration with one of them requiring a tracheostomy for respiratory compromise. Partial responses were seen in six patients (46%). Two of the six patients had received previous treatment with standard dose cisplatin. Two patients achieved long-term responses (54+, 44+ months, respectively). Both of these patients were previously untreated, inoperable (T4N3M0, T3N1M0), and subsequently received radiation therapy after two cycles of chemotherapy. Median duration of response in the remaining responders was 3 months (range, 3-10 months). High-dose cisplatin may benefit selected patients with inoperable, advanced head and neck tumors. However, further randomized trials need to be conducted before firm conclusions can be established.
Havlin, KA; Kuhn, JG; Myers, JW; Ozols, RF; Mattox, DE; Clark, GM; von Hoff, DD
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