Home Forums Melanoma: Stage III PubMed August review of Interferon usage

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  • #22077
    greenshaek
    Participant

    Hello all, this article popped up on the pubmed website. I can only access the abstract but would be curious to read the rest. Does anyone have access to the whole article? I’m in the process if dealing with my recurrence and will soon have to make the interferon decision … up until now I haven’t really read terribly good things about it but this new review sounds interesting:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24621162

    Abstract

    The degree to which interferon (IFN) alpha-2b offers real clinical benefits in the adjuvant therapy of melanoma at high risk of recurrence is a subject of debate. This, together with questions over optimal treatment scheme and concerns over toxicity, has limited its clinical use. On the basis of a review of the literature, an Italian Expert Panel has made practical recommendations for a consistent approach in the use of IFN. Although it is clear that more research into predictive factors to identify patients most likely to benefit from adjuvant IFN therapy is required, IFN remains the only currently available adjuvant option for melanoma. Based on meta-analyses of clinical trials, there is clear evidence that treatment with IFN is beneficial with regard to overall and recurrence-free survival (RFS). As such, IFN should be offered to patients who are at high risk of recurrence. Specific recommendations with regard to disease stage are provided.

    #64912
    Catherine Poole
    Keymaster

    This is just a review of literature and I don’t think the literature holds up, especially for overall survival statistics. ASCO made a statement regarding this and the time that it may provide relapse free, is the time you are on this drug, possibly facing toxicity. There is an article by Dr. Chapman who heads the melanoma program at Sloan that is very good:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16249355

    It is a drug no longer prescribed at many of our top institutions, Sloan Kettering and Mayo Clinic for a few. We hope that the new therapies will soon be offered as replacement for interferon as stage III therapies.

    #64913
    Catherine Poole
    Keymaster

    Also, I saw this good summary of the side effects, it is mind boggling, can’t wait until our new therapies make interferon history! http://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatmentsandsideeffects/guidetocancerdrugs/interferons-alfa

    #64914
    Tim
    Participant

    It looks like you have enrolled in a clinical trial and are probably no longer interested in this article, but for others who might be looking for this information in the future, I see that the full-text is now available online here:

    Interferon alpha for the adjuvant treatment of melanoma: review of international literature and practical recommendations from an expert panel on the use of interferon

    Tim

    #64915
    Catherine Poole
    Keymaster

    Thanks Tim. We haven’t heard from you in a long time. How are you doing?. The one sentence in this review of interferon that bothers me is that it states interferon remains the only only currently available adjuvant option for therapy available for stage III. It is true, it is the only approved therapy, but there are many ongoing trials with the new braf and immunotherapies. A less toxic approach may be on the scene soon! My bias is for quality of life and overall survival statistics and I believe we may be getting close to therapies that can provide both for stage III patients.

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