Phase II trial of paclitaxel, ifosfamide, and carboplatin in extensive-stage small cell lung cancer.
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Extensive-stage small cell lung cancer (ES-SCLC) remains a therapeutic challenge to the medical oncologists. We evaluated the triplet combination of paclitaxel (175 mg/m(2) over 1 h), ifosfamide (2.5 gm/m(2) over 1 h) and carboplatin (AUC=6 over 0.5 h) (PIC) all given on day 1 of a 21 day schedule. Thirty-five patients were entered with a median age of 59 years (range 40-79). The ECOG PS was 0-1 in 86%. A median of 6 cycles were delivered (range 1-6). The principal toxicity was neutropenia with 66% of patients experiencing grade 4 neutropenia. Only 9% of patients experienced febrile neutropenia. One treatment-related death (3%) due to neutropenic sepsis occurred. Non-hematologic toxicity was minimal. The overall response rate was 71% (15% complete response, 56% partial responses). Quality of life appeared to be stable across time. The median survival time was 9.5 months (95% confidence interval (CI), 6.7-13.2 months) with a 1- and 2-year survival rates of 43% (95% CI, 26-59%) and 16% (95% CI, 2-30%). PIC has activity in ES-SCLC and is associated with a response rate and survival profile similar to other combinations in this disease setting. This regimen has a tolerable toxicity profile and a favorable and convenient administration schedule.