The outcomes for patients with metastatic or recurrent esophageal cancer are dismal, with 1-year survival rates of approximately 20%. In this phase II study, we studied the combination of docetaxel (Taxotere) and irinotecan (CPT-11, Camptosar) in patients with metastatic or recurrent esophageal cancer. Eligible patients included those with histologic or cytologic diagnosis of adenocarcinoma or squamous cancer of the esophagus or gastroesophageal junction who had received no previous chemotherapy for metastatic esophageal cancer. Previous chemotherapy in the neoadjuvant or adjuvant setting was allowed. Patients received irinotecan at 160 mg/m2 over 90 minutes followed by docetaxel at 60 mg/m2 intravenously over 1 hour, with chemotherapy cycles repeated every 21 days. Patients were reevaluated every two cycles. Of a planned 40 patients, 15 were enrolled, with 14 patients evaluable for toxicity and 10 evaluable for response and survival. The combination of docetaxel and irinotecan resulted in a response rate of 30%. An additional 40% achieved stable disease. The median survival was 130 days, with three patients still alive at the time of this analysis. The toxicities included 71% incidence of grade 4 hematologic toxicities, with 43% febrile neutropenia. One patient died of cecal perforation after one cycle. There was no evidence of pharmacokinetic interaction, as systemic clearance of both drugs was similar to that seen after single-agent administration. In conclusion, the regimen of docetaxel and irinotecan is active in metastatic or recurrent esophageal cancer. However, this combination chemotherapy regimen has an unacceptable rate of febrile neutropenia. This regimen needs to be modified to reduce the incidence of febrile neutropenia.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Oncology (Williston Park, N.Y.)|
|Issue number||9 Suppl 8|
|State||Published - Sep 2003|