Carboplatin and cisplatin are both platinum-based chemotherapy drugs used in the treatment of malignant mesothelioma, but there has long been debate on which is the best option for patients. While cisplatin has been associated with better overall survival, it imposes uncomfortable side effects that reduce patient quality of life. By contrast, carboplatin causes fewer adverse effects but studies have not yielded results as positive as those for cisplatin for extending survival. But a new study presented at the IASLC 2020 World Conference on Lung Cancer has revealed that real world data contradicted those laboratory findings, showing that carboplatin provides similar overall survival to that experienced with cisplatin.
Clinical Results Show Mesothelioma Patients Do Better with Carboplatin than Lab Studies Indicate
Patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma have a wide range of treatments available to them, and physicians base their recommendations on many things, including the research that is available to them. But there’s a lot to be said for the results that they’ve seen in their own patients, which is sometimes different from the conclusions seen in laboratories.
A presentation by Kathleen Kerrigan of the Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah exemplified this, as she revealed that a retrospective study had shown nearly identical overall survival results between the two despite the patients who received cisplatin trending healthier at the time of treatment.
Researchers See No Reason to Choose Cisplatin Over Carboplatin for Mesothelioma Treatment
The researchers examined data on 787 patients with malignant mesothelioma who received either carboplatin or cisplatin as a first line of treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma. The noted that “the patients who received cisplatin did tend to be younger, healthier, with fewer comorbidities and also with better performance status,” with a median age of 70 as compared to 77 for those in the carboplatin group and the carboplatin group having a higher incidence of heart and kidney disease.
Still, when the investigators weighted these and other variables to determine outcomes, they found that the adjusted median overall survival was nearly identical for both groups, with 8.02 months for those treated with carboplatin and 8.05 months for those treated with cisplatin. When combining that information with the knowledge that carboplatin has lower toxicity, they concluded both that “carboplatin is an effective, and potentially less toxic, alternative therapy in MPM chemotherapy regimens” in real-world settings and that their results provide “added context when choosing between the two agents, given what is known regarding carboplatin’s favorable tolerability and toxicity profile.”
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, you need as much information about treatment options as possible. To connect to more resources, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.