Azacitidine as salvage therapy for acute myeloid leukemia in a severely ill patient
AbstractAcute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a hematological malignancy of myeloid progenitor cells that disrupt normal hematopoiesis. Current chemotherapy regimens result in complete remission in many cases; however, there exists no standard efficacious therapy for refractory acute myeloid leukemia. The hypomethylating agent, azacitidine, is effective in a limited number of such cases. We present a 57-year-old Filipino male with acute myeloid leukemia who was refractory to two induction chemotherapy regimens; however, he achieved complete remission after palliative therapy with azacitidine. We report this case to demonstrate the efficacy of azacitidine in refractory acute myeloid leukemia. Although the effectiveness of azacitidine in improving overall survival has been shown, this case demonstrates the effect on remission induction in high risk AML. Further studies are needed to delineate subsets of acute myeloid leukemia in which azacitidine will serve as effective therapy and to identify other targeted agents that may potentiate its effects.
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