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Table of Contents
Vol. 68, Suppl. 1, 2005
Issue release date: April 2005
Section title: Paper
Oncology 2005;68(suppl 1):22–32
(DOI:10.1159/000083130)

Standard of Care for Cancer-Related Anemia: Improving Hemoglobin Levels and Quality of Life

Cortesi E.a · Gascón P.b · Henry D.c · Littlewood T.d · Milroy R.e · Pronzato P.f · Reinhardt U.g · Shasha D.h · Thatcher N.i · Wilkinson P.i
aDipartimento Medicina Sperimentale e Patologia, Università di Roma, Rome, Italy; bHospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain; cPennsylvania Hospital, Philadelphia, Pa., USA; dJohn Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK; eStobhill Hospital, Glasgow, UK; fOspedale S. Andrea, La Spezia, Italy; gKlinik Bayreuth, Bayreuth, Germany; hBeth Israel Medical Center, New York, N.Y., USA; iChristie Hospital NHS Trust, Manchester, UK

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Paper

Published online: April 11, 2005
Issue release date: April 2005

Number of Print Pages: 11
Number of Figures: 5
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0030-2414 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0232 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/OCL

Abstract

The introduction of recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) has proven to be a major advance in the therapeutic options available for managing anemia in cancer patients. The results of placebo-controlled clinical trials and large, community-based, open-label studies have confirmed that epoetin alfa, a recombinant human erythropoietin, significantly reduces transfusion requirements, and reliably increases hemoglobin (Hb) levels in anemic (Hb level <12 g/dl) cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Increased Hb improves patients’ energy level and their ability to perform the activities of daily living, as well as their overall quality of life (QOL). These findings are independent of tumor type and disease status and are comparable in patients receiving nonplatinum- and platinum-based chemotherapeutic regimens. Furthermore, more than a decade of use in clinical trials and by physicians in routine clinical practice has demonstrated that epoetin alfa is safe and well tolerated when used to treat cancer patients with anemia. The availability of epoetin alfa as an alternative to transfusion has changed practices in anemia management; physicians can now treat anemia with the goal of achieving adequate Hb levels to relieve anemia-related fatigue, a major symptom contributing to decreased QOL in cancer patients. Incremental benefit analysis has shown that increasing Hb level from 11 g/dl to 12 g/dl yields the greatest improvement in QOL per 1 g/dl increase in Hb. The demonstrated efficacy of epoetin alfa for increasing Hb levels and improving patient QOL have made this agent a rationale choice for management of cancer-related anemia. Ongoing research will continue to provide new insights into best management of anemia with epoetin alfa in cancer patients.

© 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Paper

Published online: April 11, 2005
Issue release date: April 2005

Number of Print Pages: 11
Number of Figures: 5
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0030-2414 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0232 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/OCL


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Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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