International Journal of Hematology and Oncology 2019, Vol 29, Num 3 Page(s): 182-187
High-Dose Chemotherapy and Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Breast Cancer: Is There Still a Hope?

Taner DEMIRER

Ankara University, Faculty of Medicine, Dept of Hematology, Ankara, TURKEY

Keywords: Breast cancer, High dose chemotherapy, Stem cell transplantation, Adjuvant, Metastatic disease
The prognosis of high-risk breast cancer (HRBC) patients has changed very little in the past two decades with the use of conventional chemotherapy and even with the addition of monoclonal therapies. High-Dose Chemotherapy (HDC) with autologous stem cells transplantation (ASCT) is today seen as a safe treatment modality with low toxicity, and in fact phase II studies suggested that this approach improved long-term disease-control. Unfortunately, results of meta-analysis from randomized studies did not showed an overall survival benefit thus, the efficacy of HDC and ASCT for HRBC has been an area of intense controversy among the medical oncology community. The conclusion of the meta-analysis may further raise the question among the scientific community whether HDC with ASCT in high-risk primary breast cancer (BC) should continue to be explored or abandoned owing to a lack of definite overall survival (OS) benefit. Nevertheless, HDC might be of potential benefit in some subgroups of HRBC patients and we will focus on this issue in this concise review.