Background: Scant data are available on event-free survival (EFS) for young adults with leukemia who were 16-21 years of age at diagnosis. In acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), it is well recognized that children have a better EFS compared with adults, whereas for acute myelocytic leukemia (AML), EFS results seem to be similar. To determine the appropriate treatment for young adults with leukemia, outcome data are essential.
Methods: Young adults entered on the Childrens Cancer Group (CCG) 100 series ALL protocols and the CCG 213 AML protocol were analyzed for EFS and survival. Prognostic factors for EFS also were determined.
Results: The actuarial EFS for 143 young adults with ALL treated on the CCG 100 series ALL protocols was 64 +/- 4% at 4 years and 59 +/- 4% at 6 years. The major adverse prognostic feature was leukocyte counts greater than 50,000/microliters. The actuarial EFS for 79 young adults with AML entered on CCG 213 was 32.2 +/- 5.3% at 2 years and 28.6 +/- 5.3% at 3 years.
Conclusions: Young adults with ALL treated on CCG protocols have a 6-year EFS of approximately 60%. This is similar to the EFS for patients 10-15+ years of age at diagnosis treated on the same protocols and better than EFS results reported from most adult trials. Young adults with AML had a slightly inferior outcome compared with younger children.