Breast Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

Can Low-Dose Capecitabine Maintenance Improve Outcomes in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer?

By: Kayci Reyer
Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Disease-free survival in some patients with early-stage triple-negative breast cancer may be improved with the use of low-dose capecitabine maintenance therapy, according to research presented in JAMA. The study evaluated the effects of the lose-dose, high-frequency regimen in patients who had previously received standard adjuvant chemotherapy.

“Among all subtypes of breast cancer, triple-negative breast cancer has a relatively high relapse rate and poor outcome after standard treatment,” noted Zong-Yu Yuan, MD, of the Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine in Guangzhou, China, and colleagues. “Effective strategies to reduce the risk of relapse and death are needed.”

The study included 434 women (with a median age of 46 years) who were identified through clinical trials in China between April 2010 and December 2016. Patients were randomly assigned to either receive 650 mg/m2 of oral capecitabine twice a day for 1 year (n = 222) or undergo observation alone (n = 221). At a median follow-up of 61 months, 94 instances of disease progression, including 37 recurrences and 32 deaths, had occurred in the capecitabine group versus 56 events, including 56 recurrences and 40 deaths, in the observation group.

The estimated 5-year disease-free survival and the estimated 5-year distance disease–free survival rates were superior in the capecitabine group (82.8% vs. 73.0% and 85.8% vs. 75.8%, respectively). Patients receiving capecitabine also experienced a higher estimated 5-year overall survival of 85.5% versus 81.3%, as well as a higher estimated 5-year locoregional recurrence–free survival of 85.0% versus 80.8%.

Hand-foot syndrome was the most commonly occurring treatment-related adverse event (45.2%). A total of 7.7% of patients experienced a grade 3 adverse event.

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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