A randomized trial was initiated to compare the effects of peripheral i.v. nutrition (PIVN)-associated chemotherapy (adriamycin, vincristine, VP-16-213, and cyclophosphamide) versus a chemotherapy control group in patients with oat cell lung carcinoma. Thirty-nine evaluable patients were randomized. The test group included 19 patients, whereas 20 were followed in the control group. PIVN was scheduled each day the patient underwent chemotherapy. Each patient received 1,550 kcal day which included 10% glucose, 20% lipids, and amino acids which may or may not have been mixed in the same infusion bottle. The results show ten PIVN patients presently in complete remission at the end of three courses of treatment, compared to nine over the same time period in the chemotherapy control group. Thirty-three percent of patients are still alive after 15 months after the beginning of treatment. There was no significant difference in either general health or side effects, frequency or duration of complete remission, or survival time. After 1 year of treatment, 8 of 19 PIVN patients are still in complete remission, compared to 7 of 20 patients in the control groups.