In a nutshell
This study compared the effectiveness of surgery with and without chemotherapy with uracil and tegafur (Uftoral; UFT) plus leucovorin (LV; folinic acid) in patients with stage II colon cancer. This study concluded that surgery with UFT/LV chemotherapy significantly improved survival outcomes in these patients.
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most common types of cancer worldwide. Colon cancer involves the final part of the large intestine. The first choice for the treatment of colon cancer is usually surgery. Often, patients are given chemotherapy after surgery to make sure any remaining cancer cells are killed. This is called adjuvant chemotherapy (AC).
One AC regimen which has been shown to be effective in patients with CRC is called UFT/LV. UFT/LV is a combination of 5-fluorouracil with tegafur and leucovorin that can be taken orally and benefits patients with colon cancer. However, there are few studies evaluating the effectiveness of surgery plus UFT/LV chemotherapy in patients with stage II colon cancer.
Methods & findings
This study involved 1206 patients with high-risk stage II colon cancer. Patients were divided into 2 groups. Group 1 included 402 patients who received surgery alone. Group 2 included 804 patients who received surgery plus UFT/LV. The average follow-up time was 59 months.
After 3 years, 80.9% of the patients in group 2 were alive without any signs or symptoms of cancer compared to 74% of the patients in group 1. This difference was significant. Patients in group 1 were 36% more likely to survive without any signs or symptoms of cancer than patients in group 2.
There was no significant difference in overall survival between the 2 groups.
The bottom line
This study concluded that surgery followed by UFT/LV chemotherapy significantly improved survival outcomes in patients with stage II colon cancer.
The fine print
This study was sponsored by Taiho Pharmaceutical, the manufacturers of uracil and tegafur. The conclusions obtained were from patients who were not randomly assigned to the groups. Further larger studies are needed to validate the conclusions.
Published By :
Feb 15, 2022
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