Prognostic factors in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer receiving 5-fluorouracil and folinic acid

Joyce Steinberg, Charles Erlichman, Tahany Gadalla, Sheldon Fine, Alfred Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


We have reported that 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and folinic acid increased response rate and survival in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. Now we have analysed prognostic factors for response, toxicity, survival and time to progression. The variables used for survival and response were treatment centre, treatment, age, sex, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status (PS), site of disease, previous radiotherapy, site of primary, disease-free interval, initial alkaline phosphatase (AP), albumin (A), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and aspartate aminotransferase (SGOT). The significant independent variables for survival were PS of 2 or more, initial albumin and SGOT, and treatment received, in order of importance. The relative risk of death when patients received 5-FU/folinic acid was 60% of that of patients receiving 5-FU alone. The variables predictive of response were treatment and PS. The variables used for analysis of toxicity were age, treatment centre, treatment, sex, tumour response, PS, number of courses, SGOT, AP and albumin. Treatment was found to be predictive of toxicity. Thus, baseline albumin and SGOT, and 5-FU/folinic acid treatment are significant determinats of survival, 5-FU/folinic acid and PS of 2 or more are major determinants of response and no clinical parameter could be identified as a predictor of toxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1817-1820
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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