Objective: To determine the impact of weekly paclitaxel consolidation on progression-free survival (PFS) of women undergoing treatment for ovarian cancer.
Methods: All women with advanced epithelial ovarian or primary peritoneal carcinoma, treated with paclitaxel consolidation therapy from August 1997 to March 2002, were identified. Patients received weekly paclitaxel infused at a median dose of 80 mg/m(2) (range: 60-80 mg/m(2)) for a maximum of 12 weeks. A chart review was performed to assess disease status and chemotherapy-related toxicities. PFS was calculated from the date of initiation of induction chemotherapy until the date of documented disease recurrence.
Results: 31 women received paclitaxel consolidation therapy over the study period (29 stage III and 2 stage IV). 24 women had epithelial ovarian carcinoma and 7 were diagnosed with primary peritoneal carcinoma. The median PFS was 27 months (range: 12-62 months). The overall 2-year survival was 94%, where 17 women (55%) were without evidence of disease and 12 (39%) were alive with disease. The median follow-up was 41 months (range: 15-77 months). Over 337 weeks of consolidation therapy, 1 patient experienced Grade 3 neuropathy and 1 patient developed Grade 3 neutropenia.
Conclusion: Consolidation therapy with weekly paclitaxel infusion is a well-tolerated regimen that resulted in a median PFS of 27 months in women who obtained a complete clinical response following induction therapy. Given the lack of side effects and the potential for extending the PFS of those treated, a prospective randomized study of weekly paclitaxel should be considered.