Purpose: To compare clinical benefit response (CBR) and quality of life (QOL) in patients receiving gemcitabine (Gem) plus capecitabine (Cap) versus single-agent Gem for advanced/metastatic pancreatic cancer. Patients and Methods: Patients were randomly assigned to receive GemCap (oral Cap 650 mg/m2 twice daily on days 1 through 14 plus Gem 1,000 mg/m 2 in a 30-minute infusion on days 1 and 8 every 3 weeks) or Gem (1,000 mg/m2 in a 30-minute infusion weekly for 7 weeks, followed by a 1-week break, and then weekly for 3 weeks every 4 weeks) for 24 weeks or until progression. CBR criteria and QOL indicators were assessed over this period. CBR was defined as improvement from baseline for ≥ 4 consecutive weeks in pain (pain intensity or analgesic consumption) and Karnofsky performance status, stability in one but improvement in the other, or stability in pain and performance status but improvement in weight. Results: Of 319 patients, 19% treated with GemCap and 20% treated with Gem experienced a CBR, with a median duration of 9.5 and 6.5 weeks, respectively (P < .02); 54% of patients treated with GemCap and 60% treated with Gem had no CBR (remaining patients were not assessable). There was no treatment difference in QOL (n = 311). QOL indicators were improving under chemotherapy (P < .05). These changes differed by the time to failure, with a worsening 1 to 2 months before treatment failure (all P < .05). Conclusion: There is no indication of a difference in CBR or QOL between GemCap and Gem. Regardless of their initial condition, some patients experience an improvement in QOL on chemotherapy, followed by a worsening before treatment failure.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research