A randomized trial of etoposide + cisplatin versus vinblastine + bleomycin + cisplatin + cyclophsophamide + dactinomycin in patients with good-prognosis germ cell tumors
Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols
Neoplasms, Germ Cell and Embryonal
Standard chemotherapy for disseminated germ cell tumors (GCT) cures most patients but causes considerable acute toxicity, including treatment-related death due to septicemia during neutropenia and pulmonary fibrosis. In addition, chronic and delayed toxicities, particularly Raynaud's phenomenon, have been reported in 6% to 37% of treated patients. In an attempt to minimize the acute and chronic effects of treatment which are related primarily to vinblastine and bleomycin, a randomized trial comparing the efficacy and toxicity of vinblastine + bleomycin + cisplatin + cyclophosphamide + dactinomycin (VAB-6) and etoposide + cisplatin (EP) was conducted on 164 eligible patients with good-prognosis GCT. Seventy-nine of 82 (96%) patients receiving VAB-6 and 76/82 (93%) receiving EP achieved a complete remission (CR) with or without adjunctive surgery. Similar proportions of patients in both arms were found at surgery to have necrosis/fibrosis or mature teratoma. With a median follow-up of 24.4 months in the VAB-6 arm and 25.9 months in the EP arm, the total, relapse-free, and event-free survival distributions were similar in the two arms. Patients receiving EP experienced less emesis (P = .05), higher nadir WBC (P = .06) and platelet counts (P = .01), less magnesium wasting (P = .0001), less mucositis (P = .09), and no pulmonary toxicity. No treatment-related mortality was observed. EP is an efficacious and less toxic regimen and is recommended for good-prognosis patients with disseminated GCT.