The risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma increases with age, yet elderly patients are under-represented in clinical trials. Here, we evaluate a combination regimen including ifosfamide, carboplatin and etoposide with or without rituximab (ICE ± R) in 32 fit elderly patients (median age 75.6 years) with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. ICE ± R was generally administered in reduced doses and was well tolerated. The overall response rate (ORR) was 53.1% with a complete response (CR) rate of 40.6%. The median progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were 3.9 and 17.0 months, respectively. Patients who responded to ICE ± R achieved median PFS of 47.2 months and OS of 78.9 months. Patients ineligible for autologous transplantation who responded to ICE ± R were treated with additional cycles, and achieved a median PFS of 18.9 months and OS of 21.7 months. Previous response to first-line therapy was the strongest predictor of response, PFS and OS to second-line treatment.
- diffuse large B-cell lymphoma