Purpose. To evaluate the effects of epoetin alfa on patient- reported outcomes (PROs) in patients with breast cancer receiving myelotoxic chemotherapy. Materials and Methods. Women with hemoglobin concentrations ≤12.0 g/dl and an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status (ECOG PS) score of 0-3 were randomized 1:1 to receive epoetin alfa (10,000 IU 3 times weekly) or best standard care (BSC) during chemotherapy. The primary endpoint was the change from baseline in the total anemia subscale assessed by the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Anemia (FACT-An) questionnaire after 12 weeks of treatment. The fatigue and nonfatigue subscales from the FACT An, the Cancer Linear Analog Scale (CLAS), hemoglobin changes, ECOG PS score, tumor response, overall survival, and safety also were evaluated. Results. Of 223 patients randomized, 216 constituted the modified intent-to-treat population. Percentage changes in the total anemia subscale of the FACT-An were significantly different between epoetin alfa treatment (14.2%) and BSC (-0.5%; p =.002), favoring epoetin alfa; so were changes in the FACT-An fatigue subscale (epoetin alfa, 17.5%; BSC, -0.9%; p =.003) and nonfatigue subscale (epoetin alfa, 8.8%; BSC, 0.2%; p =.008). Similar results were observed with the CLAS. Hemoglobin concentrations >12 g/dl were more common with epoetin alfa (62.0%) than with BSC (27.6%). Tumor response, ECOG PS score, 12-month survival rate, and the incidence of serious treatmentemergent adverse events were similar between groups. Conclusion. Early intervention with epoetin alfa was well tolerated and improved anemia-related PROs in patients with breast cancer receiving myelotoxic chemotherapy.

Anemia, Breast cancer, Erythropoietin, Fatigue, Hemoglobin, Survival
dx.doi.org/10.1634/theoncologist.2009-0279, hdl.handle.net/1765/28305
The Oncologist
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Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Pronzato, P, Cortesi, E, van der Rijt, C.C.D, Bols, A, Moreno-Nogueira, J.A, de Oliveira, C.F, … Rosso, R. (2010). Epoetin alfa improves anemia and anemia-related, patient-reported outcomes in patients with breast cancer receiving myelotoxic chemotherapy: Results of a european, multicenter, randomized, controlled trial. The Oncologist, 15(9), 935–943. doi:10.1634/theoncologist.2009-0279