Twenty Years of Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation in Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma: A Single Portuguese Center Experience

Margarida Dantas Brito, Fernando Campilho, Rosa Branca, Carlos Vaz, Susana Roncon, António Campos


Introduction: Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma can be cured in 60% – 70% of patients. Autologous stem cell transplantation is the standard treatment for relapsed disease. This high-intensity treatment after first complete remission in patients with high International Prognostic Index remains controversial and was performed in our department during some years.
Material and Methods: Retrospective study, review of clinical records.
Results: This study evaluates the outcome of 113 patients transplanted between 1992 and 2012. Considering status before transplantation patients were divided in groups: a) first complete remission after 1 line of chemotherapy (n = 64); b) first complete remission after ≥ two chemotherapy lines (n = 15); c) second complete remission (n = 15); d) more advanced diseased (n = 19). Chemotherapy used in first line therapy was mainly R-CHOP (n = 71) and CHOP (n = 28). The median follow-up of patients still alive was 34 months (1 - 221). At five years, overall survival was 73% (± 5) and disease free survival was 75% (± 5).
Conclusion: Conventional chemotherapy followed by autologous stem cell transplant is a safe and efficient option for selected patients. In our series 70% high-risk patients were free from disease with this strategy.


Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation; Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse; Transplantation, Autologous.

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