SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

Multiple myeloma is the most common hematologic malignancy in African-Americans, with twice the mortality of Caucasians according to population based data. In the pretransplantation era, comparable conventional therapy has resulted in similar outcomes between African-Americans and Caucasians. However, there has been limited data on outcomes after high dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). A retrospective analysis of Caucasian (n = 55) and African-American (n = 36) myeloma patients who underwent ASCT in an equal access health care system in the Department of Defense was performed. Presenting demographic variables, pre/post ASCT characteristics, overall mortality and relapse rates after ASCT were obtained. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were calculated by Kaplan-Meier, and compared via log-rank testing. The median age at diagnosis for African-Americans = 52 years, Caucasians = 56 years (P = 0.009). There were no differences in presenting ISS stage, hemoglobin, calcium, or creatinine. African-Americans presented with higher CRP levels (P = 0.005), and a trend for less skeletal involvement (P = 0.10). Response to induction and ASCT was similar. Median PFS was 60.5 months (95% CI: 31.3–89.8 months) for African-Americans, 43.7 months (95% CI: 33.9–53.5 months) for Caucasians, HR of 1.3 (95% CI: 0.7–2.4), P = 0.46. Median OS was 95.2 months (95% CI: N/A) for African-Americans, 68.5 months (95% CI: 14.2–122.9 months) for Caucasians, HR of 1.4 (95% CI: 0.7–2.9), P = 0.41. In a cohort of myeloma patients who received autologous transplantation in an equal access health care system, there was comparable survival between African-Americans and Caucasians, suggesting that the historical increased mortality for African-Americans may be due to inequalities in access to care. Am. J. Hematol., 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.