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Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial Of The Management Of Unresectable Malignant Mesothelioma Proposed By The British Thoracic Society And The British Medical Research Council.
Published 2002 · Medicine
Malignant mesothelioma is almost invariably fatal. The incidence of the disease is rising rapidly in many countries, and there is no generally accepted standard treatment for patients with unresectable disease. According to current British Thoracic Society (BTS) guidelines, patients should be treated with active symptom control (ASC), involving (1) regular follow-up in a specialist clinic; (2) structured assessments of physical, psychological and social problems with appropriate action; (3) rapid involvement of additional specialists; and (4) parallel nursing support. Although many nonrandomized studies have reported tumor responses to anticancer chemotherapy, few have studied palliation and it is not known whether chemotherapy prolongs survival or provides clinically worthwhile palliation with acceptable toxicity when given in addition to ASC. We therefore plan to conduct a multicenter randomized controlled trial comparing (1) ASC alone, (2) ASC plus mitomycin vinblastine and cisplatin (MVP), and (3) ASC plus vinorelbine (N; Navelbine, Pierre Fabre Oncology, Winchester, UK). We chose these chemotherapy regimens because they have been shown in nonrandomized studies to provide good symptom control as recorded by patients. The outcome measures are overall survival, palliation of symptoms, performance status, analgesic usage, toxicity, quality of life, tumor response, and recurrence/progression-free survival. In a preliminary feasibility study, we are assessing the acceptability of the trial design to patients and the suitability of two standard quality-of-life instruments in mesothelioma. Data will help us to decide the final details of the large multicenter trial.