A Randomized Trial of Prophylactic Extended Carboplatin Infusion to Reduce Hypersensitivity Reactions in Recurrent Ovarian Cancer

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Hypersensitivity with repeated exposure to platinum agents is common and can preclude continued treatment, even in patients with disease that remains platinum sensitive. We sought to compare the effects of prophylactic, extended carboplatin infusion versus standard infusion on the rate of carboplatin hypersensitivity reactions (HSRs) in women with recurrent ovarian cancer.


This was a single-institution, randomized, nonblinded trial comparing a graded, 3-hour extended infusion of carboplatin with a standard 30-minute infusion in patients with recurrent ovarian cancer who were enrolled from January 2011 to April 2015. The study was designed to detect a decrease in the HSR rate from 20% (standard infusion) to 5% (extended infusion) assuming a type 1 error of 10% and power of 80% using a 1-sided test.


Of 146 enrolled patients, 114 were evaluable. Fifteen (13%) had an HSR—11% (6/56) in the extended-infusion and 16% (9/58) in the standard-infusion groups (P = 0.582). Planned treatment completion was achieved in 50 (89%) of 56 patients and 49 (84%) of 58 patients, respectively. Of 25 patients who received single-agent carboplatin, 8 (32%) had an HSR (53% of all patients who had an HSR [8/15]). Of 23 patients who received carboplatin with gemcitabine, 4 (17%) had an HSR (27% of all patients who had an HSR [4/15]). Of 8 patients who received carboplatin with paclitaxel, 3 (38%) had an HSR (20% of all patients who had an HSR [3/15]). There were no HSRs with pegylated liposomal doxorubicin, the most commonly given concurrent chemotherapy (46% of all patients).


A prophylactic, extended carboplatin infusion was not associated with a decreased HSR rate. The overall low HSR rate suggests that premedication may help reduce HSRs.

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