Influence of Non-Measurable Disease on Progression-Free Survival in Patients with Metastatic Breast Cancer

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Publication date: Available online 11 July 2017
Source:Cancer Treatment Reviews
Author(s): Hadar Goldvaser, Domen Ribnikar, Rouhi Fazelzad, Bostjan Seruga, Arnoud J. Templeton, Alberto Ocana, Eitan Amir
BackgroundThe presence of non-measurable disease is common in metastatic breast cancer. It is unknown whether treatment effect on progression free survival (PFS) is consistent among patients with measurable and non-measurable disease.MethodsA systematic literature search identified phase III randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in metastatic breast cancer that reported outcomes in patients with non-measurable and measurable disease. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals were computed to compare the individual trial treatment effect on PFS in non-measurable versus measurable disease. Analyses were repeated for bone-only compared to non-bone-only disease and based on drug mechanism of action.ResultsAmong 82 RCTs that enrolled patients with non-measurable disease, data were available from 16 trials comprising 8516 patients. Treatment effect on PFS was similar in patients with non-measurable and measurable disease (HR for intra-study comparison = 1.01, p=0.82). However, compared to non-bone-only disease, a significantly greater effect on PFS was seen in those with bone-only disease (HR 0.83, p=0.03). Compared to patients with measurable disease, there was a greater effect on PFS in those with non-measurable disease in RCTs of signal transduction inhibitors and endocrine therapy (HR 0.74, p=0.01) and a lesser effect on PFS in RCTs of antiangiogenic drugs (HR 1.34, p=0.02). Comparable effect on PFS was shown in RCTs evaluating endocrine therapy (HR 1.13, p=0.23) and chemotherapy (HR 0.73, p=0.22).ConclusionsThere is variability in treatment effect on PFS in patients with measurable and non-measurable disease, especially those with bone-only disease. Standardization of PFS determination in these patients is warranted.

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