From the Journals

Line complications plague dose-adjusted EPOCH-R in non-Hodgkin lymphoma


Key clinical point: A high rate of thrombotic complications was reported in patients treated with dose-adjusted R-EPOCH.

Major finding: In all, 17 dose-adjusted R-EPOCH patients (39.5%) experienced at least one line-associated complication, versus 8 patients (18.2%) in the R-CHOP group.

Study details: A retrospective single-institution study with 87 patients.

Disclosures: The researchers reported having no conflicts of interest.

Source: David RJ et al. Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk. 2018 Aug 29. doi: 10.1016/j.clml.2018.08.014.



Dose-adjusted etoposide, prednisone, vincristine, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, and rituximab (DA-EPOCH-R), which is used to treat several types of aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphomas, is associated with high rates of line-associated complications, a new study suggests.

Central Venous Catheter (CVC) MrArifnajafov/CC-BY-3.0

These findings, published in Clinical Lymphoma, Myeloma & Leukemia, confirm other recent findings that DA-EPOCH-R has a significantly greater rate of complications, compared with that of R-CHOP (rituximab, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone) therapy.

The authors note that the use of DA-EPOCH-R is based on data from early phase trials, as well as retrospective data, that support its use as induction chemotherapy in high-grade B-cell lymphoma with MYC, BCL2, and/or BCL6 translocations. But currently, there are no data published from randomized trials that support the use of upfront DA-EPOCH-R therapy.

DA-EPOCH-R is an infusion-based therapy that requires a central venous catheter.

In their study, Rachel J. David, MD, of Wilmot Cancer Institute, Rochester, N.Y., and her colleagues conducted a retrospective study that included all patients treated with DA-EPOCH-R at their institution between March 2011 and July 2016, and also included a concurrent cohort of patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) who were treated with R-CHOP. The goal was to identify the rates and predictors of line-associated complications linked with the use of DA-EPOCH-R therapy in this population.

The patient cohort comprised 43 patients who received DA-EPOCH-R and 44 patients who received RCHOP.

Patients in the DA-EPOCH-R cohort experienced a significantly higher rate of complications (P =.03), compared with the R-CHOP group.

In the DA-EPOCH-R cohort, 17 patients (39.5%) reported at least one LAC, which included venous thromboembolism, chemotherapy extravasation, and line-associated infection, during the study period. Grade 3 toxicity was observed in 41% of these patients.

In contrast, eight patients (18.2%) in the R-CHOP arm experienced at least one complication, with five of the eight patients experiencing grade 3-4 toxicity.

In a univariate analysis, body mass index of 35 kg/m2 and the use of a peripherally inserted central catheter line were both significantly associated with a higher risk of venous thromboembolism (P = .04 and P = .02, respectively).

β€œFor patients undergoing treatment with DA-EPOCH-R in whom the use of [central venous catheters] cannot be avoided, the morbidity of [line-associated complications] should be factored in by the clinician when determining upfront treatment,” the researchers wrote.

They reported having no conflicts of interest.

SOURCE: David RJ et al. Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk. 2018 Aug 29. doi: 10.1016/j.clml.2018.08.014.

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