PURPOSE: This study was designed to evaluate efficacy, toxicity, and adverse effects of combination of chemotherapy drugs and intraperitoneal perfusion of verapamil in the treatment of malignant ascites.
METHODS: Seventy-two patients with malignant ascites were divided into two study groups. Patients in control group (31 cases) received conventional chemotherapy, whereas patients in the combined treatment group (41 cases) were given verapamil intraperitoneally in addition to chemotherapy drugs. Thirty days after the treatment, efficacy, toxicity, and adverse effects were assessed in both study groups.
RESULTS: The treatment of control group led to 1 case of complete remission and 2 cases of partial remission, making the rate of efficacy (complete + partial remission) of 9.7 %. The combined treatment group demonstrated 13 cases of complete remission and 22 cases of partial remission. Thus, the rate of efficacy was significantly higher in the combined treatment group (85.36 %; p < 0.05 vs. control group). Using KPS scores, changes in quality of life were compared before and after the treatment. The quality of life improved in control group by 13.7 %, while combined treatment group showed improvement of 83.5 % (p < 0.05 vs. control group). Further, cumulative survival rate was also significantly higher in the combined treatment group. Treatment toxicity and the rate of adverse effects and intestinal adhesion were not significantly different between study groups.
CONCLUSIONS: Intraperitoneal perfusion of verapamil enhances the efficacy of chemotherapy drugs, prolongs survival, and improves the quality of life. Intraperitoneal administration limits cardiotoxicity of verapamil.
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