Eric S. Winer, MD | Authors

Commentary (Ligibel/Winer): Adjuvant Hormonal Therapy in Early Breast Cancer

October 01, 2005

In their article entitled “AdjuvantHormonal Therapy in Early BreastCancer,” Kumar and Leonard summarizemuch of the available datafrom trials of hormonal therapy in preandpostmenopausal women. They concludethat the use of aromatase inhibitorshas led to an improvement indisease-free survival in postmenopausalpatients with early-stage breast cancer,but that the optimal timing ofaromatase inhibitor therapy and thelong-term side effects of the drugsremain uncertain. The authors alsohighlight the benefits associated withtamoxifen in premenopausal womenand discuss the unresolved role of ovarianablation in this population.

GM-CSF and Low-Dose Cytosine Arabinoside in High-Risk, Elderly Patients With AML or MDS

April 02, 2005

Priming of leukemic cells with cytokines may enhance the efficacy of cell-cycle chemotherapy. In this study, we utilized these synergistic effects of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF, sargramostim [Leukine]), hydroxyurea, and low-dose cytosine arabinoside to treat elderly patients with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) or myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). In a single-institution, retrospective study, we evaluated 94 treatments with concomitant hydroxyurea, cytosine arabinoside, and GM-CSF between the years of 1997 and 2003 in high-risk elderly patients with AML or MDS. A total of 80% of patients received all of the GM-CSF doses; 78% of patients received all of the cytosine arabinoside doses. Adverse events were minimal. No patient developed mucositis or alopecia. The most common adverse event was neutropenic fever, which was noted in 57% of patients. Twenty-one percent of patients remained neutropenic after treatment until death or relapse. Sixty-eight percent of patients reached an absolute neutrophil count of greater than 1,000 μL in a median of 33.5 days. Our data show an overall response rate of 52%, with a complete response rate of 39% and a partial response rate of 13%. Overall, our study showed that low-dose cytosine arabinoside given by continuous infusion together with continuous infusion GM-CSF and hydroxyurea was well-tolerated and effective in treating elderly AML and MDS patients who were not eligible for standard induction therapy.

Breast Cancer in Men

October 01, 2003

As noted by Dr. Buzdar, breastcancer rarely affects men. Accordingto the most recent datafrom the National Cancer Institute’sSurveillance Epidemiology and EndResults program and the National Programof Cancer Registries, the incidenceof invasive breast cancer is 1.5cases per 100,000 men vs 134 casesper 100,000 women.[1] Breast cancerin women is a far greater public healthproblem and understandably has receivedthe lion’s share of researchfunding and public attention.

Management of Venous Thromboembolism in Cancer Patients

March 01, 2000

Drs. Lee and Levine have written a thoughtful, thorough review of the management of venous thromboembolism in cancer patients. Venous thromboembolism remains an important, common, and potentially fatal complication of cancer and many of its therapies. Certainly, the incidence of upper extremity and catheter-related thrombosis has increased significantly in recent years with the widespread use of central venous catheters. On the other hand, recent years have also brought new, less invasive methods of diagnosis and the promise of still more new diagnostic methods to come.