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