Unusually favorable outcome of 6 consecutive patients with diffuse malignant peritoneal mesothelioma treated with repeated doses of intraperitoneal paclitaxel. A case series

Surg Oncol. 2020 Jun:33:96-99. doi: 10.1016/j.suronc.2020.01.009. Epub 2020 Jan 25.


Background: Diffuse malignant peritoneal mesothelioma (DMPM) is a disease in transition. Two decades ago this cancer had a median survival of 1 year. Recent reports in selected patients show a 5-year survival of 70% and median survival not reached at 10 years.

Methods: Consecutive patients with a biopsy-confirmed diagnosis of DMPM, epithelial type, were treated by a consistent treatment plan. Cytoreductive surgery using peritonectomy procedures was always the first intervention. In the operating theater after all resections were complete but prior to intestinal reconstruction, hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) using 2 cytotoxic agents was given. An intraperitoneal port was placed for normothermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (NIPEC). Prospective data regarding pharmacokinetics, survival and adverse events were accumulated.

Results: Six consecutive patients were treated. Three to 6 one-week long cycles of normothermic intraperitoneal paclitaxel were administered through an intraperitoneal port. No systemic chemotherapy was given. Pharmacokinetic studies were performed on 5 patients. Four patients are free of disease at 8, 13, 18, and 19 years and two patients died of disease 15 years after definitive treatment. Three of 6 patients had a grade III/IV adverse event related to intraperitoneal chemotherapy administration through a port.

Conclusions: The small number of patients treated with repeated doses of intraperitoneal paclitaxel cause these data to be interpreted with caution. However, the long-term benefit and favorable pharmacology of these patients suggests the need for further study. Adverse events from this intraperitoneal port were recorded in half of the patients.

Keywords: Cytoreductive surgery; EPIC; HIPEC; Intraperitoneal chemotherapy; Intraperitoneal port; NIPEC; Peritonectomy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / administration & dosage*
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacokinetics
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Chemotherapy, Adjuvant / methods*
  • Cisplatin / administration & dosage
  • Cytoreduction Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Doxorubicin / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy / methods
  • Male
  • Mesothelioma, Malignant / therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Paclitaxel / administration & dosage*
  • Paclitaxel / pharmacokinetics
  • Peritoneal Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Doxorubicin
  • Paclitaxel
  • Cisplatin