The therapeutic performance, effect on quality of life and cost effectiveness of an orally administered medication in a home care setting were examined prospectively in a group of 61 patients presenting with advanced colorectal carcinoma. A regimen of daily ftorafur capsules (370 mg/m2) and leucovorin tablets (20 mg/m2) was offered to 35 symptomatic patients with poor performance status; the standard in-hospital i.v. protocol of 5-fluouracil and leucovorin was given to the remaining 26 patients. Follow-up and survival analysis indicated that there was no compromise in survival associated with home care and oral chemotherapy. There were statistically significant advantages in terms of reduced toxicity and improved Karnofsky performance status in this group. Home care was approximately 70% less expensive. A home treatment program based on oral ftorafur may be the most desirable option for all patients with advanced colorectal carcinoma.
- Advanced colorectal carcinoma
- Cost effective
- Oral ftorafur