An evidence-based review of the incidence of CNS bleeding with anti-VEGF therapy in non-small cell lung cancer patients with brain metastases

Alan Sandler, Vera Hirsh, Martin Reck, Joachim von Pawel, Wallace Akerley, David H. Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a key mediator of angiogenesis. Solid tumors, including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), are dependent on angiogenesis for growth and metastasis. Anti-VEGF therapy has demonstrated clinical benefits in the first-line treatment of NSCLC. Central nervous system (CNS) metastases are a common occurrence among patients with lung cancer and confer significant morbidity and mortality. The risk of CNS hemorrhage in NSCLC patients receiving anti-VEGF therapy is still relatively unexplored because patients with CNS metastases have generally been excluded from trials of anti-VEGF therapy due to a perceived increased risk of cerebral hemorrhage. Recently, large prospective, randomized trials, open-label studies and observational cohort studies in NSCLC have provided data on the incidence of CNS hemorrhage in large patient populations, reflective of community practice. Methods: We conducted a literature review for the available data on the incidence of CNS hemorrhage in NSCLC patients with brain metastases receiving anti-VEGF therapy. Results: There is no significantly increased risk of CNS hemorrhage in patients with NSCLC and emerging (previously untreated) or pretreated CNS metastases receiving anti-VEGF therapy. Conclusions: We conclude that clinical trial data indicate that anti-VEGF therapy can be considered for NSCLC patients with emerging or pretreated CNS metastases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalLung Cancer
Volume78
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2012

Keywords

  • Anti-VEGF therapy
  • Bevacizumab
  • Brain metastases
  • CNS hemorrhage
  • CNS metastases
  • NSCLC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cancer Research

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