Advanced epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is associated with dismal outcome and progression-free survival (PFS) shortens with each subsequent relapse. For patients with recurrent and platinum refractory disease, therapeutic options are limited. Oral metronomic therapy (OMT) is associated with symptomatic relief and stable response in a significant proportion of patients. We retrospectively evaluated the outcome of patients with EOC treated with OMT at a tertiary care hospital in north India.
Between January 2011 to December 2017, 36 EOC patients received OMT. Patients’ median age was 50 yr (range, 38-81 yr) and they had received a median of two lines of prior chemotherapy. OMT regimen included a combination of cyclophosphamide, etoposide (VP-16) and celecoxib with or without pazopanib along with supportive care. Response rates and outcomes were ascertained using the Gynecological Cancer Intergroup Guidelines. The toxicity was graded according to the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events v.4.03.
The median CA-125 before initiating OMT was 160 U/ml (range, 42.23-5330 U/ml). The median interval between last chemotherapy and starting OMT regimen was 159 days (range, 1-1211 days). The overall response rate was 50 per cent. The median progression-free survival (PFS) was 8.2 months [95% confidence interval (CI): 5.03-10.33], and the median overall survival was 38 months (95% CI: 25.6-NR). Patients who received two lines of chemotherapy before OMT (P=0.052) and those who received pazopanib-based OMT (P=0.0513) had better PFS.
For patients with relapse and refractory EOC, OMT could be a reasonable option. A combination of oral etoposide (VP-16) and pazopanib needs further evaluation in a large number of patients in a randomized trial.