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Interpreting febrile neutropenia rates from randomized, controlled trials for consideration of primary prophylaxis in the real world: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

Truong, J; Lee, E K; Trudeau, M E; Chan, K K W.
Ann Oncol; 27(4): 608-18, 2016 Apr.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26712901


Guidelines recommend primary prophylaxis (PP) with granulocyte-colony-stimulating factors (G-CSF) for patients above a febrile neutropenia (FN) risk threshold of 20%. Practitioners often use FN rates of regimens based on data from randomized, controlled trials (RCTs), which are often comprised of highly selected patients. Patients in the community setting may be at higher risk of FN.


A systematic literature search was conducted for full-length articles reporting FN rates for breast cancer-related chemotherapies between January 1996 and February 2014. A regimen was included if there was at least one RCT and one observational study. Meta-regression was used to model the odds of FN.


130 studies involving 29 regimens and 50 069 patients were identified. Sixty-five observational study (n = 7812) and 110 RCT (n = 42 257) cohorts were included. The unadjusted FN rate was 11.7% in observational and 7.9% in RCT cohorts. The univariable odds ratio (OR) for FN in the observational study compared with RCT cohorts was 1.58 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.09-2.28; P = 0.017]. The FN rates remained significantly higher in the observational study compared with RCT cohorts (OR = 1.74; 95% CI 1.15-2.62; P = 0.012) after adjusting for age, chemotherapy intent, and regimen; this meant that a 13% (95% CI 8.7% to 17.9%) FN rate in RCT would translate into 20% FN rate in observational study.


FN rates in the observational studies are significantly higher than suggested by RCTs. Guidelines should clarify how FN rates from RCTs should be applied in clinical practice. Large population-based studies are needed to confirm FN rates in the real world.
Selo DaSilva