Introduction: Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) is an aggressive haematological malignancy which is more common in the elderly and has a poor 5-year survival. There are no established beneficial interventions to treat AML in elderly patients. It is unclear whether outpatient delivery of palliative chemotherapies could reduce the burden of disease and hospitalisation for this group.
Aims: To compare overall survival, response to treatment and supportive care needs between inpatient and outpatient-based treatments for AML in elderly patients.
Materials & Methods: We undertook a retrospective cohort study in the Haematology Department at Belfast City Hospital comparing overall survival (OS), treatment responses and supportive care needs between inpatient and outpatient treatments for AML in elderly patients. Consecutive entrants to outpatient and inpatient based clinical trials between February 2013 and January 2017 were included. Case notes, chemotherapy charts, clinic letters, blood bank and electronic care records were analysed.
Results: OS and rates of CR (complete remission), CRi (CR with incomplete count recovery) and PR (partial response) was not significantly different between inpatient and outpatient regimens with a median OS of 201 vs. 124 days, respectively. No response was observed in 35% of patients in the inpatient group compared with 65% of the outpatient group, however this did not reach significance. Of patients who achieved CR/CRi in the outpatient group, 75% relapsed at a median of 271 days, compared with 60% of the inpatient group at a median of 209 days. At least one grade 3-4 toxicity was experienced by 90% and 83.3% of inpatient and outpatient groups, respectively. There was no difference in six common grade 3-4 toxicities. Patients on the outpatient regimen spent fewer days in hospital but had a median packed red cell use of more than twice that of the inpatient group. No difference was noted in infections, days on antibiotics or platelet use.
Discussion: Our data suggests that outpatient chemotherapy is safe and can reduce hospitalisation for elderly patients with AML, without a decline in OS or response rates. These results provide an important rationale to test the comparative efficacy of outpatient chemotherapy. Chemotherapy related toxicities remain a significant source of morbidity in this population and highlight the need to develop novel, targeted therapies for this age group.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||The Ulster Medical Journal|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2019|