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עמוד בית
Mon, 15.07.24

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December 2002
David B. Geffen MD and Sophia Man MD

Between 1990 and 2001, altogether 28 new anticancer drugs were approved for use in Israel. The new agents include cytotoxic drugs, biologic compounds, and hormone therapies. Among the cytotoxic agents introduced, the taxanes, vinorelbine, gemcitabine, irinotecan, topotecan and temozolomide, represent important new drugs active in a range of solid malignancies including lung, breast, ovarian, bladder, pancreatic, and colon cancer as well as brain tumors. Epirubicin, idarubicin, and liposomal doxorubicin offer less toxic and in some instances more effective alternatives to older anthracylines for leukemia, breast cancer, ovarian cancer and other diseases. New oral agents are offering a chance for disease palliation without the need for burdensome intravenous access. Rituximab and trastuzumab have introduced monoclonal antibody therapy to the clinic, substantially improving the treatment of patients with lymphoma and breast cancer, respectively. The first tyrosine kinase inhibitor, a molecularly targeted therapy, imatinib, was approved for use in chronic myeloid leukemia and has also shown remarkable activity in gastrointestinal stromal tumors. A variety of aromatase inhibitors have provided less toxic and more effective hormone therapy for the treatment of breast cancer. The challenge for clinicians is to optimize the use of the new available agents for their patients' benefit, and the challenge for health policy-makers in Israel is to integrate the new anticancer pharmaceuticals into the basic health benefits package mandated for all citizens.

August 2002
Jamal Zidan, MD, Shifra Zohar, MD, Ioram Mezerecki, MD, Stefan Kral, MD and Boris Bilenca, MD

Background: The treatment of patients with recurrent ovarian carcinoma after failure of first and second-line chemotherapy is still debated. Chemical agents used for third and fourth-line therapy usually yield poor results with severe toxic side effects.

Objective: To summarize our experience with goserelin in the treatment of patients with recurrent ovarian cancer.

Methods: From September 1996 to June 1999 we administered goserelin, 3.6 mg subcutaneously every 4 weeks, to 15 patients with advanced and recurrent epithelial ovarian cancer (median age 59.0, median performance status 3.0).

Results: Seven of 15 eligible patients relapsed after platinum-based chemotherapy (3 of them also received paclitaxel and another 2 received tamoxifen). Four patients relapsed after carboplatin and paclitaxel, one of whom was treated with topotecan thereafter. Two patients relapsed after single-agent paclitaxel. Two patients with advanced disease and poor performance status without previous treatment received only goserelin. There was one complete response (6.7%) and 1 partial response (6.7%) lasting 8 and 14 months respectively (overall response rate 13.4%). In addition, the disease stabilized in three patients (20%) for a median of 7.5 months. In 10 patients the disease progressed. There was no significant toxicity. Median survival of all patients was 5.8 months.

Conclusion: Goserelin was helpful in one-third of our patients with advanced and refractory ovarian cancer. It is an easy and non-toxic option for treating very ill or previously heavily treated patients.
 

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