Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study finds overall health and quality of life intact 10 years after stem-cell transplantation

19.09.2005


Survivors of stem-cell transplantation for blood cancers can expect to be just about as healthy 10 years later as adults who have never had a transplant, according to a new study by researchers at Fred Hutchinson Research Cancer Center.



The findings, to be published in the Sept. 20 edition of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, is the first of its kind to follow a large group of patients from before their transplant through the 10-year post-transplant period.

"In many areas of health, our survivors are undistinguishable from case-matched controls who participated in this study and had not had a transplant," said lead investigator Karen Syrjala, Ph.D., head of the Biobehavorial Sciences group in the Hutchinson Center’s Clinical Research Division.


For example, the study found that transplant survivors and case-matched controls reported similar rates of hospitalization and outpatient medical visits. They had similar rates of diseases and conditions such as asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, osteoporosis and hypothyroidism, and they had similar psychological health, marital satisfaction and employment.

However, Syrjala and colleagues also found that transplant patients had a higher incidence of musculoskeletal problems, such as stiffness and cramping; poor long-term sexual health; and increased urinary frequency and leaking than the control group. Long-term survivors also had higher use rates of anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medications even though reported rates of depression and anxiety were about the same as that of the control group.

The study also reported potentially under-diagnosed problems among survivors such as the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis and hypothyroidism because the reported rates of these diseases were lower than expected.

The researchers urge primary care providers to routinely screen for these problems, which might otherwise be considered relevant primarily to older populations, Syrjala said. The median age at transplant of the patients surveyed was 36.4 years.

In all, survivors reported an average of 3.5 medical problems versus 1.7 for controls, even though survivors and controls had similar rates of hospitalization and outpatient medical visits.

Syrjala and colleagues made an important and positive observation among 10 percent of the survivors who had suffered relapse and were in complete remission at the time of the study. "The fact that patients can relapse and still have healthy, full lives 10 years later and look like everyone else who has gone through a transplant without relapse is really good news," she said. "In the past, relapse after a transplant was always thought to be a very bad sign for quality of life."

All of the patients in the study were transplanted at the Hutchinson Center between March 1987 and March 1990. More than 400 patients consented to the study and after 10 years 137 transplant survivors and an equal number of controls completed a self-report of medical problems, symptoms and health-related quality of life. Most of those surveyed had been treated for leukemia or lymphoma. More than three-quarters received donor cells from a matched relative. There was an almost equal split between males and females.

Survivors were asked to nominate a case-matched control participant, ideally a biologic sibling of the same gender and within five years of age; this was achieved in 60 percent of the controls.

The study survey asked participants about 85 diseases and symptoms and to indicate whether they had these problems now, whether the diseases or symptoms were ever a problem in the past 10 years or were no longer a problem. Twenty-seven diseases or conditions emerged as the most prevalent and were included in the final analysis. They ranged from asthma to second cancers.

"Ten years after HCT (hematopoietic cell transplantation), the 137 survivors were indistinguishable from case-matched controls in many areas of health and psychosocial functioning, although survivors reported a greater number of medical problems and greater limitations in sexuality, insurance and social, emotional and physical roles," the authors wrote. "Some of these problems are known to be associated with HCT, while others have not been recognized previously as late concerns."

This type of research is important, Syrjala said, because the number of long-term survivors of stem-cell transplantation is increasing rapidly. For example, patients with acute leukemia or chronic myeloid leukemia who survive without recurrent malignancy for two years after allogeneic stem-cell transplantation (the infusion of stem cells from a donor) have an 89 percent probability of surviving for five or more years. More than 45,000 people worldwide receive stem-cell transplants each year.

The study is important also because information on 10-year survivorship has been sparse. "Although research on late effects has increased, systematic information has not been available to guide oncologists or primary care physicians in routine monitoring and management of health-care needs after 10 years in this population," the authors wrote.

Kristen Woodward | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fhcrc.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Real-time feedback helps save energy and water
08.02.2017 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Safe glide at total engine failure with ELA-inside

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded after a glide flight with an Airbus A320 in ditching on the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were saved.

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded...

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientists reach back in time to discover some of the most power-packed galaxies

28.02.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Nano 'sandwich' offers unique properties

28.02.2017 | Materials Sciences

Light beam replaces blood test during heart surgery

28.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>