Lege Artis Medicinae

[Oral clodronate for the prevention and therapy of bone metastasis of breast cancer]

NAGYKÁLNAI Tamás

SEPTEMBER 20, 2002

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2002;12(09)

[1600 mg/d oral clodronate has been shown to reduce the incidence of skeletal complications significantly in advanced breast cancer cases with lytic bone metastases. Analysis of clinical trials revealed that the adjuvant, prophylactic administration of clodronate possibly decreases the number of non-skeletal metastases and might prolong survival.]

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Lege Artis Medicinae

[Reference price system as a potential method for pharmaceutical cost containment]

KALÓ Zoltán, VINCZE Zoltán, LOVAS Kornélia, BODROGI József

[Reference pricing is one of the potential cost containment methods for pharmaceuticals. Authors describe its main types and the international examples of reference pricing together with technical details of its introduction. Consequences of the system are grouped into 5 categories: pharmaceutical expenditure, other health care expenditure, medical implications, consequences on patients and their health status, and political effects. They propose that reference pricing should be introduced only gradually based upon recommendations by multiprofessional teams. The system should be evidence based which includes clinical effectiveness, safety, compliance and cost-effectiveness. ”Real” active substance based reference pricing is justifiable for broad ranges of pharmaceuticals. General introduction of therapeutic reference pricing in Hungary, however, may result in serious negative consequences.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Cytological and genetic background of senescence]

LÁSZLÓ Valéria, FALUS ANDRÁS

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Nobel Prize for Medicine 2002]

SZENDE Béla

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Longissima via]

NAGY Zsuzsa

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Drug treatment possibilities in chronic liver diseases]

HAGYMÁSI Krisztina, LENGYEL Gabriella, FEHÉR János

[Alcoholic and drug induced liver diseases, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, hepatitis C and B chronic hepatitis, autoimmune diseases (primary biliary cirrhosis, primary sclerosing cholangitis, autoimmune hepatitis) and metabolic disorders (hemochromatosis, Wilson's disease) are the main chronic liver diseases. Authors summarize, based on the latest literature data, the medications of chronic liver diseases, emphasizing the treatment of the everyday practice. Natural and synthetic antioxidants are approved for the treatment of chronic alcoholic liver diseases besides abstinence, with diet of adequate quality and quantity. Nucleoside analogues (lamivudin) are recommended for the first-line therapy of the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. Interferon is presently considered the optimal treatment for only certain patients. Interferon and ribavirin combined therapy is well-established in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C. Ursodeoxycholic acid is the beneficial treatment option for primary biliary cirrhosis and primary sclerosing cholangitis. Prednisolon and azathioprine constitute the basic therapy of autoimmune hepatitis. Presumably, in the future, new strategies based on immunosuppressive combinations will play a crucial role. The chelating deferoxamine has less important part in the treatment of hemochromatosis. D-penicillamine still plays principle role in the medication of Wilson's disease.]

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[Traditionally, neoadjuvant systemic therapy (NST) serves as treatment of advanced breast cancer to achieve technical operability by resulting in tumor regression. Nowadays, NST is advantageous in all cases if adjuvant systemic therapy is needed, since the in vivo study of its effect provides possibility for the estimation of prognosis, the treatment may be modifi ed according to the therapeutic response, the systemic therapy starts earlier as compared to adjuvant therapy, and fi nally, it may result in the reduction of surgical and radiotherapeutical radicality. The type of NST should be selected on the basis of tumor features refl ecting treatment sensitivity. In case of chemosensitive cancers, chemotherapy is taxane- and anthracycline-based, and the planned dose should be delivered prior to surgery. In HER2-positive cancers, the addition of an anti-HER2 agent doubles the rate of pathological complete regressions. In hormone-sensitive tumors, the standard neoadjuvant endocrine therapy consists of an aromatase inhibitor (postmenopause), or tamoxifen or an aromatase inhibitor combined with an LHRH analog (premenopause) for 4-8 months that is continued following the surgery in the adjuvant setting. For the early evaluation of the effect of NST, serial tumor biopsy or imaging studies (MRI, PET) seem promising. Sentinel lymph node biopsy around the NST should be practiced with prudence; it may warrant the avoidance of axillary blockdissection in some cases. For the design of radiotherapy, the initial stage and the degree of regression are considered.]

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[INTRODUCTION - Non-operative cytological and histopathological assessment of breast lesions are part of the triple (physical, imaging and pathologic) diagnostic approach and allow a more precise planning of surgical procedures. Both methods have advantages and disadvantages; currently, core biopsy is believed to be more efficient in reaching the diagnostic target. PATIENTS AND METHODS - Breast specimens with a histological diagnosis at the Department of Pathology of the Bács-Kiskun County Teaching Hospital were analysed for their preoperative pathology, using the conventional C1-5 and B1-5 diagnostic categories. RESULTS - 295 cytology and 130 core needle biopsy cases were analysed. The rate of non diagnostic (C1 and B1) material was higher for cytology (0.18 versus 0.08 in general; 0.09 versus 0.01 for malignant cases). The rate of cases with an uncertain diagnostic category (C3 and C4 or B3 and B4) was also higher for the cytology specimens (0.24 versus 0.07). False-negative and false-positive cases were rare, but still more frequent among cytology specimens. CONCLUSION - Core needle biopsy performs better than fine needle aspiration cytology in the establishment of a nonoperative diagnosis at our institution. Despite these results, cytology continues to be the first diagnostic choice, because of its relatively low costs.]

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[Tyrosine-kinase inhibitors and bisphosphonates in the treatment of metastases from renal cell carcinoma]

EDUARD Vrdoljak, TOMISLAV Omrčen

[Bone metastases (BMs) are common in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC) and approximately in 30% of patients with metastatic RCC (mRCC) will develop. Inhibition of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) has been pursued as a therapeutic target in the treatment of metastatic clear cell RCC (mRCC). Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), such as sunitinib, pazopanib, sorafenib, and axitinib, became the therapy of choice for patients with mRCC. Apart from the undisputed effi cacy of TKI in treatment of mRCC, the problem of metastatic bone disease still remains. There is evidence that the presence of BMs in m-RCC patients has a signifi cant and clinically-relevant negative impact on survival and potentially on the outcome of VEGF-targeted therapy. Also, common practice in the treatment of such patients is bonedirected therapy with BPs. Recent evidence shows a potentially synergistic effect on effi cacy but also a potential impact on increased toxicity of combining TKIs and BPs. This review highlights the importance of this subject and aims to facilitate further research and optimize the treatment of this important and common group of RCC patients.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[CARCINOMATOUS MENINGITIS]

CSERNI Gábor, VÁGÓ Tibor, TÖRÖK Norbert, GAÁL Zoltán, VELKEI Tamás, SERÉNYI Péter, GÖCZŐ Katalin, TUSA Magdolna, KOVÁCS Katalin, SZŰCS Miklós

[INTRODUCTION - Carcinomatous meningitis is a serious complication of advanced stage solid tumours, which may become more common with improved survival. CASE REPORTS - A 53-year-old woman with a recent history of breast cancer (pT2pN2M0) had been treated by mastectomy and adjuvant chemotherapy and radiotherapy. She presented with weakness, diplopia and vertigo raising the possibility of vertebrobasilar ischaemia or an intracranial mass. In another patient, a 62-year-old man with hypertension, a stenotic common bile duct had been diagnosed when examined for abdominal complaints. When he presented with a high blood pressure value accompanied by intensive headache, vomiting and bilateral hearing loss, he was thought to have a hypertensive crisis. The rapidly progressive neurological symptoms and the history of breast cancer and findings suggesting pancreatic head tumour, respectively, led to the clinical diagnosis of carcinomatous meningitis in both cases, despite any evidence on CT scans or a negative MR scan, though of limited value, in the first case. This diagnosis was confirmed by the laboratory and cytological findings of the cerebrospinal fluid, and also by the post mortem examination, since both patients died within a month after the onset of the symptoms. The primary tumour in the second patient proved to be a widely metastasizing diffuse type gastric cancer. CONCLUSION - Carcinomatous meningitis has a varying but characteristic presentation which generally makes it easy to diagnose, but it can sometimes present differential diagnostic problems. What we can learn from these two cases may help in recognizing this complication.]