A randomized phase 3 trial of thalidomide and prednisone as maintenance therapy after ASCT in patients with MM with a quality-of-life assessment: the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinicals Trials Group Myeloma 10 Trial Academic Article uri icon

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  • We conducted a randomized, controlled trial comparing thalidomide-prednisone as maintenance therapy with observation in 332 patients who had undergone autologous stem cell transplantation with melphalan 200 mg/m2. The primary end point was overall survival (OS); secondary end points were myeloma-specific progression-free survival,progression-free survival, incidence of venous thromboembolism, and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). With a median follow-up of 4.1 years, no differences in OS between thalidomide-prednisone and observation were detected (respective 4-year estimates of 68% vs 60%, respectively; hazard ratio = 0.77; P = .18); thalidomide-prednisone was associated with superior myeloma-specific progression-free survival and progression-free survival (for both outcomes, the 4-year estimates were 32% vs 14%; hazard ratio = 0.56; P < .0001) and more frequent venous thromboembolism (7.3% vs none; P = .0004). Median survival after first disease recurrence was 27.7 months with thalidomide-prednisone and 34.1 months in the observation group. Nine second malignancies were observed with thalidomide-prednisone versus 6 in the observation group. Those allocated to thalidomide-prednisone reported worse HRQoL with respect to cognitive function, dyspnea, constipation, thirst, leg swelling, numbness, dry mouth, and balance problems. We conclude that maintenance therapy with thalidomide-prednisone after autologous stem cell transplantation improves the duration of disease control, but is associated with worsening of patient-reported HRQoL and no detectable OS benefit.


  • Stewart, AK
  • Trudel, S
  • Bahlis, NJ
  • White, D
  • Sabry, W
  • Belch, A
  • Reiman, T
  • Roy, J
  • Shustik, C
  • Kovacs, MJ
  • Rubinger, M
  • Cantin, G
  • Song, K
  • Tompkins, KA
  • Marcellus, Deborah
  • Lacy, MQ
  • Sussman, Jonathan
  • Reece, D
  • Brundage, M
  • Harnett, EL
  • Shepherd, L
  • Chapman, J-AW
  • Meyer, Ralph

publication date

  • February 28, 2013

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