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The purpose of this study was to assess the efficacy and tolerability of i.v. dexrazoxane [Savene™ (EU), Totect™ (US)] as acute antidote in biopsy-verified anthracycline extravasation.Two prospective, open-label, single-arm, multicentre studies in patients with anthracycline extravasation were carried out. Patients with fluorescence-positive tissue biopsies were treated with a 3-day schedule of i.v. dexrazoxane (1000, 1000, and 500 mg/m2) starting no later than 6 h after the incident. Patients were assessed for efficacy (the possible need for surgical resection) and toxicity during the treatment period and regularly for the next 3 months.In 53 of 54 (98.2%) patients assessable for efficacy, the treatment prevented surgery-requiring necrosis. One patient (1.8%) required surgical debridement. Thirty-eight patients (71%) were able to continue their scheduled chemotherapy without postponement. Twenty-two patients (41%) experienced hospitalisation due to the extravasation. Mild pain (10 patients; 19%) and mild sensory disturbances (nine patients; 17%) were the most frequent sequelae. Haematologic toxicity was common as expected from the fact that the extravasation occurred during a chemotherapy course. Other toxic effects were transient elevation of alanine aminotransferases, nausea, and local pain at the dexrazoxane injection site.Dexrazoxane proved to be an effective and well-tolerated acute treatment with only one out of 54 assessable patients requiring surgical resection (1.8%).