Cardiotoxicity of high dose rate epirubicin evaluated by angiocardioscintigraphy

C. L. Maini, A. Ferraironi, R. Sciuto, P. Vici, A. Tofani, F. Conti, M. Lopez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cardiotoxicity of high dose rate epirubicin (140-160 mg/m2 as a bolus every 21 days up to a cumulative dose of 1280 mg/m2) was evaluated by angiocardioscintigraphy in 121 patients with advanced neoplastic disease and no preexisting cardiac risk factors. LVEF was measured in each patient before chemotherapy and during the treatment at different epirubicin cumulative dosages. The cases were subdivided into 3 groups: Group A=121 basal studies; Group B=93 studies performed under 800 mg/m2, Group C=44 studies performed over 800 mg/m2. A statistically significant decrease of LVEF was observed only at cumulative doses over 800 mg/m2 (mean LVEF: 53% ± 11% in Group C vs 64% ± 7% in Group A). In no case was chemotherapy stopped prematurely and no case of heart failure was observed. A decrease of LVEF 10 units was recorded in 15 patients and 12 of them had been treated with over 800 mg/m2. No clinical signs of severe cardiac failure were observed in these patients during a follow-up of 5-17 months. In conclusion, epirubicin treatment at high dose rate up to a cumulative dose of 1000 mg/m2 does not increase the risk of clinically relevant cardiomyopathy and an LVEF decrease of 10 units should not in itself lead to chemotherapy termination in responsive patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-446
Number of pages4
JournalOncology Reports
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1995


  • Angiocardioscintigraphy
  • Cardiotoxicity
  • Epirubicin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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