Should elderly patients with higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes undergo allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation? | Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation

Should elderly patients with higher-risk myelodysplastic syndromes undergo allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation?

Journal Title: 
Expert Rev Hematol
Author(s): 
Zeidan AM, Gore SD.
Primary Author: 
Zeidan AM
Original Publication Date: 
Friday, October 4, 2013

Evaluation of: Koreth J, Pidala J, Perez WS et al. Role of reduced-intensity conditioning allogeneic hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation in older patients with de novo myelodysplastic syndromes: an international collaborative decision analysis. J. Clin. Oncol. 31(21), 2662-2670 (2013). Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) include a group of hematopoietic malignancies characterized by dysplastic changes, ineffective hematopoiesis and variable risk of leukemic progression. At diagnosis, 86% of MDS patients are ≥60 years. Azacitidine, the only drug that prolongs life in high-risk (HR)-MDS patients, adds a median of only 9.5 months to life. Allogeneic stem cell transplantation (alloSCT) remains the only potentially curative approach. Despite recent improvements including use of reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) that decrease transplant-related mortality, alloSCT continues to be used rarely in elderly MDS. There is paucity of data regarding outcomes of RIC alloSCT in elderly MDS patients, especially in direct comparison with azanucleosides. In this paper, the authors discuss the recent Markov decision analysis by Koreth et al. in which investigators demonstrated superior survival of patients with HR-MDS aged 60-70 years who underwent RIC alloSCT in comparison with those who were treated with azanucleosides.

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