South African Medical Journal

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Kaposi’s sarcoma: Good outcome with doxorubicin, bleomycin and vincristine sulphate (ABV) chemotherapy and highly active antiretroviral therapy

P.B. Hesseling, E Katayi, P Wharin, R Bardin, F Kouya, D Palmer, M Glenn, M Kruger


There is little published information on effective treatment of Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS) in children in low-income countries. We prospectively treated 12 patients with an institutional review board-approved protocol consisting of four monthly courses of doxorubicin (Adriamycin), bleomycin and vincristine sulphate (ABV), with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) plus co-trimoxazole prophylaxis for those who were HIV-positive, with additional vincristine if remission was not achieved after 4 months. Maintenance HAART plus co-trimoxazole was given to all HIV-positive patients. A fine-needle aspirate and CD4+ count were done if possible, and staging was performed according to Mitsuyasu. Eight of ten HIV-positive patients with stage III - IVB disease, and both HIV-negative patients with stage I disease, were in remission after 473 - 1 490 (mean 939) days. One patient died after absconding during treatment, and one died from neutropenia-related pulmonary infection. ABV with or without HAART is an effective treatment option for children with KS.
AJOL African Journals Online