High and Low Dose Folinic Acid, 5-Fluorouracil Bolus and Continuous Infusion for Poor-Prognosis Patients with Advanced Colorectal Carcinoma

  • Bano, Nusrat (Pharmacology, Ziauddin College of Pharmacy, Ziauddin University) ;
  • Najam, Rahila (Department of Pharmacology, University of Karachi) ;
  • Mateen, Ahmed (Radiotherapy, Consultant Clinical Oncologist, Karachi Institute of Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine (KIRAN)) ;
  • Qazi, Faaiza (Pharmaceutics, Jinnah University for Women)
  • Published : 2012.08.31


Objective: Evaluation and assessment of response rate, duration and toxicity in patients subjected to 5-FU based chemotherapy. Background: The therapeutic ratio shifts with different 5FU/LV regimens and none yet serve as the internationally accepted Gold Standard. A bimonthly regimen of high dose leucovorin is reported to be less toxic and more effective than monthly low dose regimens. We here compare therapeutic responses and survival benefit of the two regimens in poor prognosis patients with advanced colorectal carcinoma. Patients and Methods: A total of 35 patients with histologically confirmed colorectal carcinoma were subjected to de Gramont and Mayo Clinic regimen. Nineteen patients were treated with high dose folinic acid ($200mg/m^2$), glucose 5%, 5-FU ($400mg/m^2$) and 22 hr. CIV ($600mg/m^2$) for two consecutive days every two weeks. These patients had failed responses to previous chemotherapy and were above sixty years of age with poor general status. Sixteen patients (six below 60 years) with progressive disease were subjected to low dose folinic acid ($20mg/m^2$)for five days, 5FU($425mg/m^2$) injection bolus for 5 days, every five weeks. An initial evaluation was made in sixty days and responders were reevaluated at sixty days interval or earlier in case of clinical impairment. Based on positive prognosis, the therapy was continued. Evaluation of treatment response was made on the basis of WHO criteria. Results: The response rate was 44% in thirty four evaluable patients, with 4 complete responses (11.8%) and 11 (32.4%) partial responses. The two schedules were well tolerated, whereas, mild toxicity without WHO Grade ${\geq}2$ events was assessed. The response duration was extended (12 months) in a few patients with age above sixty years treated by high dose bimonthly regimen of 5FU/LV. Conclusion: The regimens are safe and effective in advanced colorectal carcinoma patients with poor general status.


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