Effect of topotecan as second-line chemotherapy for small cell lung cancer patients with interstitial lung disease

J Chemother. 2011 Dec;23(6):367-70. doi: 10.1179/joc.2011.23.6.367.


Small cell lung cancer with interstitial lung disease (ILD-SCLC) is difficult to treat because of the risk of fatal pneumonitis. Our study aims to evaluate the validity of topotecan (TOP) as chemotherapy for patients with relapsed ILD-SCLC. Overall survival was compared between TOP and other drugs as second-line treatments for ILD-SCLC patients. Forty-seven patients began chemotherapy and second-line treatment was administered in 48.5% of relapsed cases. The response rate of TOP for second-line therapy was 16.7%. Hematologic toxicities were grade 4 anemia, grade 3 neutropenia and grade 3 thrombocytopenia. Mild pulmonary toxicity was observed in 1 case. Patients receiving TOP as second-line treatment showed no significant difference in survival when compared to patients who underwent other regimens (median survival time 179 vs. 76 days; p =0.76). TOP is a well tolerated drug and is a viable candidate for second-line treatment of ILD-SCLC patients.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / complications*
  • Lung Neoplasms / complications*
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Small Cell Lung Carcinoma / complications*
  • Small Cell Lung Carcinoma / drug therapy*
  • Topotecan / adverse effects
  • Topotecan / therapeutic use*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Topotecan