Thirty‐four women with first recurrence of breast cancer were randomized into two groups, and received either Diethystilbesterol (DES) 5 mg orally (PO) t.i.d. alone, or in combination with Chlorambucil (CB) 0.1–0.2 mg/kg/day PO. All patients randomized were greater than 5 years postmenopausal at the time of the study and had no prior chemical or hormonal therapy. Estrogen receptors were not available. There was no significant difference between Groups A and B with respect to frequency of objective response or mean duration of that response, with the values for Group A being 46.2% and 4.8 months, respectively, and for Group B, 46.7% and 4.8 months (P > 0.05). The most common toxicities noted for both groups were nausea and vomiting, edema, weakness, and thrombophlebitis. The risk of major toxicity necessitating withdrawal from the study was greater in Group B due to the added danger of thrombocytopenia/pancytopenia. The addition of CB to DES does not appear to offer any significant advantage over DES alone in women with first recurrence of breast cancer.
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