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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

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Tumor Volume Reduction After Gemcitabine Plus Cisplatin Induction Chemotherapy in Locally Advanced Nasopharyngeal Cancer: Comparison with Paclitaxel and Cisplatin Regimens

Li Zheng, Wenjun Liao, Peng Xu, Baisen Li, Hao Wen, Shichuan Zhang

(Department of Oncology, The Affiliated Hospital of Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, Sichuan, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24: CLR8001-8008

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.909736

BACKGROUND: Gemcitabine plus cisplatin (GP) is a novel regimen of induction chemotherapy (IC) for treating locoregional advanced nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC). This retrospective study aimed to compare the efficacy of GP and TP (paclitaxel plus cisplatin) regimens in tumor volume reduction after IC.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between January 2014 and July 2017, 44 patients with III-IVB stage NPC received GP IC followed by concurrent chemoradiotherapy. These patients were matched with 44 patients receiving TP IC according to clinical characteristics. The gross tumor volume of the primary site and positive lymph nodes were delineated by magnetic resonance imaging before and after IC, as well as the nasopharyngeal air cavities. The changes in tumor volume and nasopharyngeal air cavity after IC were calculated and compared between the 2 groups. Treatment toxicities and early survival outcomes were also reported.
RESULTS: There were no differences in the initial tumor volume and nasopharyngeal cavity between the 2 groups. The volume changes after IC for the primary site, lymph nodes, and nasopharyngeal cavity were 31.4 (range, –0.97–75.8), 4.68 (range, –7.08–22.06), and 2.62 (range, 0.1–7.63) mL for GP and 23.36 (range, –59.14–83.58), 4.7 (range, –11.21–48.61), and 1.47 (range, –2.47–6.17) mL for TP, respectively. All comparisons favored the GP regimen. The toxicities of the 2 regimens were comparable and no survival differences were observed at follow-up (median, 18.7 months).
CONCLUSIONS: Changes in the tumor volume and nasopharyngeal air cavity showed that the GP regimen was significantly more effective than the TP regimen in tumor burden reduction. However, whether the advantages of GP can translate into survival benefits requires further investigation.

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