BACKGROUND: Administration of paclitaxel on a weekly schedule in combination with carboplatin is associated with a lower incidence of neuropathy and myelosuppression. The authors conducted subgroup analysis of their randomized phase II study of three different schedules of weekly paclitaxel with carboplatin to determine the efficacy of each regimen in elderly patients (aged ≥ 70 years) with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). METHODS: Patients with advanced NSCLC were randomized to one of three different weekly paclitaxel/carboplatin regimens. After four cycles of chemotherapy, those with objective response or stable disease were randomized to weekly paclitaxel or observation as maintenance therapy. Four hundred three patients were enrolled in the study, of whom 111 (28%) were aged 70 years or older. RESULTS: The treatment regimen of weekly paclitaxel (100 mg/m for 3 of 4 weeks) and carboplatin (area under the curve = 6 mg/ml/min once every 4 weeks) (arm 1) was associated with the best therapeutic index overall. The median survival and 1-year survival rates were 11.3 months and 50% for patients in the ≥70 years cohort versus 11.2 months and 46% for the <70 years cohort in arm 1. Efficacy results were comparable between the two groups in the other arms as well. Grade 4 neutropenia and febrile neutropenia occurred in 13.6% and 2.3% in the ≥70 years cohort compared with 4.5% and 1.1% in the <70 years cohort in arm 1. CONCLUSION: The weekly regimen of paclitaxel administered in combination with carboplatin is tolerated well by elderly NSCLC patients and has comparable efficacy with younger patients.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine