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

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

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: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>