From January, 1985, through January, 1987, 165 patients with advanced gastric cancer were randomized to receive epirubicin (E) alone (90 mg/m2 day 1), 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) alone (500 mg/m2 days 1-5), or the combination of E (90 mg/m2 day 1) and 5-FU (400 mg/m2 days 1-5). Courses were repeated every four weeks. Patients were stratified by extent (locally advanced vs. metastatic), evaluability (measurable vs. non-measurable) and by history of prior radiotherapy (yes vs. no). Randomization to single arm epirubicin was stopped after 26 patients were enrolled. Objective responses occurred in only 1/16 (6%) of the patients treated with E alone, 1/40 (5%) with 5-FU alone and 4/33 (12%) with both 5-FU and E. There were no significant differences in all eligible patients with respect to time to progression or overall survival in the three treatment arms. Toxicity was primarily hematologic and more pronounced in the combination arm. Neither 5-FU alone, epirubicin alone, or the combination have a major impact in the treatment of gastric carcinoma.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmacology (medical)