Weekly doxorubicin in the treatment of patients with aids-related kaposi’s sarcoma

Margaret A. Fischl, Susan E. Krown, Kevin P. O’ Boyle, Ronald Mitsuyasu, Steve Miles, James C. Wernz, Paul A. Volberding, James Kahn, Jerome E. Groopman, Judith Feinberg, Michele Woody

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61 Scopus citations


Fifty-three patients with AIDS-related Kaposi's sarcoma and no previous treatment with cytotoxic chemotherapy enrolled in a phase II multicenter study to evaluate the safety and efficacy of weekly doxorubicin treatment. Doxorubicin was given intravenously at a dose of 15 mg/m2. Patients were stratified for purposes of analyses by tumor burden and coexistence of HIV-associated signs and symptoms; stratum I included patients with cutaneous disease alone and no symptoms, and stratum II included patients with visceral disease, tumor-associated edema, a previous opportunistic infection, or systemic symptoms. Fifty-one patients were evaluable for toxicity and 50 for tumor response. Five patients had a partial response (10%); 32, a minor response (64%); 12, no change (24%); and one, progression (2%) as the best measurable response. Partial response durations ranged from 4 to 14 weeks. Fifteen patients subsequently showed progression while on treatment. A significantly greater number of patients in stratum I (20.1%) had a partial response compared with those in stratum II (0%, p = 0.009). The major toxicities included nausea (37%), stomatitis (9.8%), mucositis (13.7%), and moderate to severe neutropenia (71%). Neutropenia was dose limiting and resulted in discontinuation of doxorubicin in 18% of the patients. Two patients developed cardiac toxicity. In conclusion, doxorubicin treatment induced relatively few tumor responses and remission durations were short. Treatment was limited by a high rate of toxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-264
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1993


  • Cytotoxic chemotherapy
  • Doxorubicin
  • Kaposi’s sarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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