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Weekly Paclitaxel for Metastatic Breast Cancer in Patients Previously Exposed to Paclitaxel

April-June 2015, Volume 02, Number 2
Benjamín Dávalos-Félix, Alejandro de León-Cruz, José Luis González-Vela, Juan Francisco González-Guerrero, María Fernanda-Noriega and Eloy Cárdenas-Estrada
Centro Universitario Contra el Cáncer UANL, Monterrey, Mexico; Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, Mexico

Background: Retreatment with weekly paclitaxel in heavily pretreated breast cancer patients has been reported before with varying results, but has not been addressed specifically. Methods: Patients with metastatic breast cancer, histologically confirmed with measurable disease, previously exposed to weekly paclitaxel in the adjuvant or neoadjuvant setting or as therapy for metastatic disease were treated with paclitaxel 80 mg/m2 body surface area, weekly for three weeks with an interval of one week rest (four-week cycle). Results: 18 patients were enrolled from December 2011 to July 2013; 100% of the patients had received paclitaxel previously, 39% neoadjuvant, 17% adjuvant, 44% in the metastatic setting. Of the patients, 56% were in the fifth line, 28% in the third line, and 16% in the fourth line. Thirty-three percent of the patients received paclitaxel more than a year before, 11% more than four years, and 56% more than seven years. Grade 3 neutropenia was observed in 12%, and one case of grade 4 neutropenia was observed. There were no deaths due to toxicity. Grade 1 peripheral neuropathy was observed in 34% of the patients, grade 2 in 22%, and grade 3 in 12%. Two patients had therapy withheld due to neuropathy. Progression-free survival was 6.2 months for the whole group. Partial responses were seen in 28% and stable disease in 61%. Two patients had progressive disease. Conclusions: Retreatment with this schedule of weekly paclitaxel was well tolerated and effective in controlling metastatic breast cancer after multiple lines of therapy.

Key words:
Metastatic breast cancer. Weakly paclitaxel. Retreatment with paclitaxel. Heavily pretreated breast cancer.
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