Biweekly triplet chemotherapy with gemcitabine, cisplatin and vinorelbine for advanced chemotherapy naïve non-small cell lung cancer

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Aims and background.

To investigate the efficacy and tolerability of biweekly scheduled triplet chemotherapy consisting of gemcitabine, cisplatin and vinorelbine for chemotherapy-naïve advanced non-small cell lung cancer.

Methods and study design.

Patients with stage IIIB/IV non-small cell lung cancer and performance status of 0-2 were eligible. Patients who had brain metastasis and of an older age were also enrolled in the study. The triplet combination chemotherapy consisted of gemcitabine, cisplatin and vinorelbine at the doses of 1000 mg/m2, 25 mg/m2 and 50 mg/m2, respectively, were administered on day 1 and 14, every 28 days, up to 6 cycles.


Thirty patients were enrolled in the study. Median age was 60 years (range, 42-74). Most of the patients (83%) had metastatic disease and 7 patients (23%) had brain metastasis. In assessing 24 patients for response evaluation, none had complete response. Partial responses were achieved in 18 (60%) patients. Four patients (13%) had stable disease and 2 (7%) progressed. Thirteen percent and 20% of the patients developed severe (grade 3-4) neutropenia and anemia, respectively. Febrile neutropenia, severe thrombocytopenia, hepatic and renal toxicity were not seen. Overall and progression-free survival were 8.15 and 7.15 months, respectively. Patients who had no brain metastasis (P = 0.069), who had more than 3 courses of chemotherapy (P <0.001), and who had chemotherapy applied without dose reduction (P = 0.018) had better survivals.


The biweekly schedule of the triplet chemotherapy combination including gemcitabine, cisplatin and vinorelbine was effective in advanced, mostly metastatic non-small cell lung cancer with acceptable and manageable side effects.

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