Fluorouracil and leucovorin for metastatic colorectal cancer

J Chemother. 1990 Feb;2 Suppl 1:38-40. doi: 10.1080/1120009x.1990.11739003.


We have performed a prospective randomized controlled study of 5-fluorouracil (5FU) + leucovorin versus 5FU alone in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. The 5FU at a dose of 370 mg/m2/d x 5 days and the leucovorin at a dose of 200 mg/m2/d x 5 days were given every 28 days. The 5FU dose was escalated to equitoxicity in the single agent arm on subsequent studies. The response rate was 33% for the combination and only 7% for 5FU alone. The median survival for 5FU + leucovorin was 12.6 months and 9.6 months for 5FU alone. The dose-limiting toxicity was mucositis with diarrhea being the second most common problem. The combination of 5FU + leucovorin is an effective treatment in the management of patients with metastatic colorectal cancer and should be used as a foundation from which to build upon.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Colorectal Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Fluorouracil / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Leucovorin / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic


  • Leucovorin
  • Fluorouracil