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Switching to Pegylated Interferon?

Forums General Melanoma Community Switching to Pegylated Interferon?

  • Post
    Melanoma Mom
    Participant

    I know there has been some discussion on the boards about pegylated Interferon recently. An article that Aim At Melanoma posted today makes me wonder if it would be 1) possible 2) beneficial to switch from the standard Interferon to the pegylated? Our son has four months completed of the standard  kind, finishing treatment in December. The major negative of peg. in my mind would be the long duration – five years – BUT if it were more beneficial at fighting off a recurrence, I believe we would easily accept that length.

    I know there has been some discussion on the boards about pegylated Interferon recently. An article that Aim At Melanoma posted today makes me wonder if it would be 1) possible 2) beneficial to switch from the standard Interferon to the pegylated? Our son has four months completed of the standard  kind, finishing treatment in December. The major negative of peg. in my mind would be the long duration – five years – BUT if it were more beneficial at fighting off a recurrence, I believe we would easily accept that length. He has very little side effects from the drug so we would basically switch (if possible) because of any benefits from longer delay of recurrence.

    Heading to Dana-Farber later this week for a check-up and wonder what they will say to this question ….

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  • Replies
      Vermont_Donna
      Participant

      Hi,

      Sounds like an intersting discussion to have with DF oncologists. I have no knowledge of the peg. interferon, but I did complete 11 months of the low dose interferon injections. I think its marvelous that your son is doing so well and tolerating the Interferon with few if any side effects.

      I wish him continued success at staying NED.

      Vermont_Donna, stage 3a

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      Vermont_Donna
      Participant

      Hi,

      Sounds like an intersting discussion to have with DF oncologists. I have no knowledge of the peg. interferon, but I did complete 11 months of the low dose interferon injections. I think its marvelous that your son is doing so well and tolerating the Interferon with few if any side effects.

      I wish him continued success at staying NED.

      Vermont_Donna, stage 3a

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        Melanoma Mom
        Participant

        I just E-mailed the Oncologist that wrote the article, asking some of my questions, so we will see what I hear back.

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        Melanoma Mom
        Participant

        I just E-mailed the Oncologist that wrote the article, asking some of my questions, so we will see what I hear back.

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      EmilyandMike
      Participant

      Hello

      I have been reading about the FDA approval of Peg Inf and was actually really surprised they approved it on the results of the one study, which to me, dont seem that significant?  I havent been able to read the entire study only the abstract below – but I have heard that interferon works best with microscopic nodal disease versus macroscopic:

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18620949

      According to the EORTC 18991 study: The 4-year rate of recurrence-free survival was 45.6% in the interferon group and 38.9% in the observation group. There was no difference in overall survival between the groups. 

      So 5 years of the drug for a 6.7% benefit over observation?   Please let me know what you find out because I am curious what the doc says!

      Best,

      Emily

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        Melanoma Mom
        Participant

         

        I agree ….. unless there was significant benefits to the pegylated version, I can't imagine switching from the one year standard treatment to the five year plan. I have heard back from the physician and he is not suggesting we switch, as Josiah, our son, is having very few side effects and is feeling pretty darn great. Maybe the pegylated Interferon is a better route for someone who has a higher chance of having difficult side effects. It does seem that the older one is, the harder the treatment, although there are exceptions to every rule, of course.

         

        The physician was very kind to respond and actually wants to know more about Josiah's diagnosis, as he has an extremely unusual set of factors. I am faxing the pathology to him tomorrow, per his request. The more Oncologists that will ponder his case, the better!

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        Melanoma Mom
        Participant

         

        I agree ….. unless there was significant benefits to the pegylated version, I can't imagine switching from the one year standard treatment to the five year plan. I have heard back from the physician and he is not suggesting we switch, as Josiah, our son, is having very few side effects and is feeling pretty darn great. Maybe the pegylated Interferon is a better route for someone who has a higher chance of having difficult side effects. It does seem that the older one is, the harder the treatment, although there are exceptions to every rule, of course.

         

        The physician was very kind to respond and actually wants to know more about Josiah's diagnosis, as he has an extremely unusual set of factors. I am faxing the pathology to him tomorrow, per his request. The more Oncologists that will ponder his case, the better!

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      EmilyandMike
      Participant

      Hello

      I have been reading about the FDA approval of Peg Inf and was actually really surprised they approved it on the results of the one study, which to me, dont seem that significant?  I havent been able to read the entire study only the abstract below – but I have heard that interferon works best with microscopic nodal disease versus macroscopic:

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18620949

      According to the EORTC 18991 study: The 4-year rate of recurrence-free survival was 45.6% in the interferon group and 38.9% in the observation group. There was no difference in overall survival between the groups. 

      So 5 years of the drug for a 6.7% benefit over observation?   Please let me know what you find out because I am curious what the doc says!

      Best,

      Emily

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      James from Sydney
      Participant

      I have read the report on the study and whilst it did not provide benefit for overall survival there was a Relapse free advantage with Peg IFN over Control, the median period was 34 months vs 25 months an additional 9 months before reccurence. Our son passed away just a few months before BRAF Trials started in Australia we would have gladly taken another 9 months which may have given him the extra time to have started the BRAF Trial.

      The problem with Statistics and Overall Survival benefit is that it is all Historical and does not take into consideration new drugs that are appearing every few months which can be game changers.

      best wishes

      James

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      James from Sydney
      Participant

      I have read the report on the study and whilst it did not provide benefit for overall survival there was a Relapse free advantage with Peg IFN over Control, the median period was 34 months vs 25 months an additional 9 months before reccurence. Our son passed away just a few months before BRAF Trials started in Australia we would have gladly taken another 9 months which may have given him the extra time to have started the BRAF Trial.

      The problem with Statistics and Overall Survival benefit is that it is all Historical and does not take into consideration new drugs that are appearing every few months which can be game changers.

      best wishes

      James

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