Purpose: We evaluated the role of paclitaxel in patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma and renal insufficiency or as second line therapy for metastatic disease.
Materials and methods: Nine patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma received 175 to 250 mg./m2. paclitaxel intravenously as a 24-hour infusion. Six patients had renal insufficiency with a median serum creatinine of 2.25 mg./dl. (range 1.9 to 3.2) and 3 with normal renal function were treated after disease progression following 1 to 2 prior chemotherapy regimens.
Results: Of 9 patients 5 (56%) achieved a partial response, including 4 of 6 with renal insufficiency. Toxicity was primarily hematological with 4 patients experiencing febrile neutropenia. There was no adverse impact on renal function.
Conclusions: Paclitaxel as a single agent represents an effective therapeutic alternative for patients with advanced transitional cell carcinoma of the urothelium and renal insufficiency precluding cisplatin or gallium nitrate based chemotherapy. Additionally, paclitaxel appears to be effective in patients in whom prior cisplatin based therapy failed.