Background: The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence, risk factors and prognostic impact of anaemia and thrombocytopenia in patients with bone metastases (BM) from prostate cancer.
Methods: Retrospective cohort study including 51 consecutive patients treated at a community hospital. Twenty-nine patients (57%) received taxotere after diagnosis of BM.
Results: Haemoglobin (Hb) < or = 12.0 g/dL at BM detection was associated with shorter overall survival. During follow-up, 25 patients (49%) experienced episodes with Hb < 10 g/dL unrelated to side effects of cancer therapy. Fifteen patients required red blood cell transfusion. Median time from diagnosis of BM to Hb < 10 g/dL was 23 months. Median survival from Hb < 10 g/dL was 5.4 months. There was no factor predicting for Hb < 10 g/dL. Five patients (10%) developed thrombocyte (Trc) count <50 x 10(9)/L. All of these had previously received blood transfusion. Median interval from Hb < 10 g/dL to Trc < 50 x 10(9)/L was 2.5 months. Survival after thrombocytopenia was short (3 weeks to 4 months). Haematuria and subdural haematoma were among the causes of death.
Conclusions: We found high rates of significant bone marrow failure in treatment-refractory patients. Both Hb < 10 g/dL and Trc < 50 x 10(9)/L predict for unfavourable survival.