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Patients with recurrent malignant epithelioid mesothelioma (MM) after surgery and standard chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed have limited treatment options.
We performed a retrospective cohort study of patients with recurrent MM undergoing Pressurized IntraPeritoneal/Thoracal Aerosol Chemotherapy (PIPAC/PITAC) with doxorubicin 1.5 mg/m2 and cisplatin 7.5 mg/m2. Data were retrospectively collected in a prospective registry of patients undergoing PIPAC/PITAC. Study outcomes were microscopic tumor regression grade (TRG), survival and adverse events (v4.0 CTCAE).
A total of 29 patients (m/f = 17/12) with MM with a mean age of 62.4 (range: 42 to 84) years were analyzed. A total of 74 PIPAC and 5 PITAC procedures were performed. The mean number of PIPAC applications was 2.5 (range: 0 to 10) per patient. Twenty patients (69%) had > 2 PIPAC procedure and were eligible for TRG analysis. TRG 1 to 4 was observed in 75% (15/20) of patients. Major regression (TRG 3) or complete regression (TRG 4) was observed in 20% and 10%, respectively. PIPAC induced significant tumor regression in 51.7% (15/29) of patients with a cumulative effect after repetitive PIPACs (PIPAC #1 vs. PIPAC #2: p = 0.001; PIPAC #1 vs. PIPAC #3: p = 0.001; PIPAC #1 vs. PIPAC #4: p = 0.001). Postoperative CTCAE grade 4 complications were observed in two patients (6.9%) who had cytoreductive surgery (CC2) and intraoperative PIPAC. One patient (3.4%) died due to postoperative kidney insufficiency. After a follow up of 14.4 (95% CI: 8.1 to 20.7) months after the last PIPAC/PITAC application, median overall survival was 26.6 (95% CI: 9.5 to 43.7) months (from the first application).
After prior abdominal surgery and systemic chemotherapy, repetitive PIPAC applications are feasible and safe for patients with end-stage MM. Furthermore, PIPAC induces significant histological regression of malignant mesothelioma in the majority of patients. PITAC is feasible, but its safety and efficacy to control malignant pleural effusion remain unclear.