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Characteristics and Survival Outcomes of Children With Hodgkin Lymphoma Treated Primarily With Chemotherapy

Ashraf, Muhammad S. MBBS, DCH, MCPS, FCPS, MRCP*; Naz, Fozia MBBS*; Yakoob, Mohammad Y. MD, MS, DS

Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology: August 2019 - Volume 41 - Issue 6 - p 452–456
doi: 10.1097/MPH.0000000000001496
Original Articles

Background: Hodgkin disease is a malignant tumor of the lymphatic system that comprises ∼6% of childhood cancers. In developing countries, efforts are made to ensure adherence to standard protocol/regimens, study patients’ outcomes, and compare with that in developed world.

Materials and Methods: We conducted a retrospective medical records’ review of 212 children younger than 20 years presenting to The Indus Hospital in Pakistan with previously untreated Hodgkin lymphoma between August 2000 and December 2012. We collected demographic and other epidemiologic variables such as age, sex, stage, subtype of disease, and survival outcomes.

Results: The mean±SD age of patients at time of diagnosis was 9.0±3.8 years with a male to female ratio of ∼4.7:1. In total, 44 (20.8%) patients were 5 years of age or above at presentation. Overall, 131 (61.8%) patients presented with B-symptoms and mixed cellularity was the most frequently diagnosed subtype in 65.1% of cases. In total, 170 (80.2%) achieved full remission after completion of chemotherapy. Patients were treated with alternating cycles of ABVD (Adriamycin, Bleomycin, Vincristine, and Dacarbazine) and COPDAC (Cyclophosphamide, Vincristine, Prednisolone, and Dacarbazine). The majority (n=114, 59.1%) received 6 cycles of chemotherapy, 44 (22.8%) received ≤4 cycles followed by 24 (12.4%) receiving 8 cycles. Radiotherapy was administered only to those patients with significant residual disease at the end of chemotherapy (n=20, 10%). The 5-year overall survival and event-free survival in our cohort was 89.6% and 82.1%, respectively.

Conclusion: Our findings suggest that treatment with 4 to 8 alternating cycles of ABVD/COPDAC has an excellent outcome in childhood Hodgkin disease.

*Department of Pediatric Oncology, The Indus Hospital

Indus Hospital Research Center, Indus Health Network, Karachi, Pakistan

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Muhammad S. Ashraf, MBBS, DCH, MCPS, FCPS, MRCP, Department of Pediatric Oncology, The Indus Hospital, Karachi 75190, Pakistan (e-mail:

Received October 4, 2018

Accepted March 16, 2019

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