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Posted by on Mar 10, 2019 in Multiple Myeloma | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study evaluated the impact of carfilzomib (Kyprolis) and dexamethasone (Decadron) on quality of life for patients with relapsed or refractory (does not respond to treatment) multiple myeloma (MM). This study concluded that patients treated with this combination had a higher quality of life.

Some background

MM is a type of cancer of the bone marrow that can lead to abnormal immune cells. One of the main treatment goals is to improve the patient's quality of life. The side effects of anti-cancer treatments can negatively impact quality of life. Because different treatments have different effects, it is important to compare them to determine their impact on quality of life.

Carfilzomib and dexamethasone are commonly used together to treat relapsed or refractory MM.  Carfilzomib targets cancer cells without damaging normal cells. This leads to cancer cell death with fewer side effects. When combined with other anti-cancer drugs, dexamethasone can help kill cancer cells. The impact of carfilzomib plus dexamethasone on the quality of life of patients with MM remains under investigation.

Methods & findings

This study included 929 patients with relapsed or refractory MM. All patients received dexamethasone. Patients also received either carfilzomib (464 patients) or bortezomib (465 patients). Patients were followed-up for up to 72 weeks.

Overall, more patients treated with carfilzomib responded to treatment compared to patients treated with bortezomib (316 patients vs. 251 patients).

After 12 weeks, significantly more patients treated with carfilzomib had an improvement in quality of life compared to patients who received bortezomib (21.4% vs. 16%). On average, patients treated with carfilzomib developed a poorer quality of life much later than patients treated with bortezomib (3.7 months vs. 2.8 months). 

Significantly fewer patients treated with carfilzomib developed numbness or tingling in the hands or feet (6% vs. 32%). This is a type of nerve cell disorder called peripheral neuropathy.

The bottom line

This study concluded that patients with MM who were treated with carfilzomib had a greater improvement in quality of life compared to those treated with bortezomib. 

The fine print

The authors of this study received funding from the manufacturers of some of the study drugs. Therefore, the results of this study may be biased.

What’s next?

If you have questions about the management of MM, talk to your care team about your treatment options.

Published By :

Blood cancer journal

Date :

Feb 22, 2019

Original Title :

Health-related quality of life in the ENDEAVOR study: carfilzomib-dexamethasone vs bortezomib-dexamethasone in relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma.

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