Ninety-seven patients were analysed retrospectively and divided into two groups; those who had a dose interruption during the first two cycles of sunitinib treatment and those who did not.
Thirty-eight patients (39.2%) had a dose interruption during the first two cycles of treatment with sunitinib. In these patients, median progression-free (6.54 versus 11.3 months) and overall survival (16.9 versus 30 months) were significantly shorter than in the patients who did not have a dose interruption. In addition, the relative dose intensity within the first two cycles of treatment with sunitinib was significantly lower in patients with a dose interruption than in those without (52.7% versus 75.0%).
This study showed the negative effect of interrupting treatment during the first two cycles of sunitinib on the survival of metastatic RCC patients. The researchers concluded that careful monitoring of patient tolerability is required in order to maintain the effectiveness of sunitinib treatment during the first few cycles.