New Effective Chemotherapy Regimen for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

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According to Italian researchers, a 7-drug chemotherapy regimen for advanced Hodgkin’s lymphoma can improve initial tumor control when compared with the typical regimen of doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine (ABVD).

This team of researchers who conducted the research utilized in this study, headed up by Simonetta Viviani, MD, from the Milan Cancer Institute, published their results in the July 21 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

"Long-term outcome did not differ significantly between the 2 regimens," the authors wrote.

"If the goal is cure with the least overall toxic effects, the strategy of ABVD therapy — reserving rescue therapy with high-dose chemotherapy and autologous hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation for patients in whom the primary treatment fails — must be favored," wrote Joseph Connors, MD, from the BC Cancer Agency Centre for Lymphoid Cancer in Vancouver, British Columbia.

"Initial ABVD wins hands down in terms of side effects," he said.

"Once cure is regularly being attained in the majority of patients and curative secondary treatment is available, the clinically valid comparison is between strategies of overall, not just primary, treatment," Connors wrote. "An apparently more effective initial treatment may be unattractive because of increased toxic effects."

More research had to be done on the topic before any definitive conclusions can be made.

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