The purpose of this review is to summarize the Stanford experience in Hodgkin's disease, the late effects of treatment, and strategies to improve management to maximize cure and decrease late effects in these patients.Between 1960 and 1999, 2617 consecutive patients with Hodgkin's disease have been seen, treated, and rigorously followed at Stanford. This population includes patients of all ages and stages of disease. The database summarizing this experience serves as the source of survival and mortality data over 4 decades. Two thousand two hundred thirty-two of the population comprise the group evaluated for secondary cardiac disease. Two thousand one hundred sixty-two patients have been evaluated for risk of secondary leukemia, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and solid tumors. Eight hundred eighty-five women were evaluated for secondary breast cancer, prompting a subsequent analysis of risk of secondary cancer among 694 pediatric patients.The probability of cure of Hodgkin's disease has dramatically improved over the past 40 years. Today, 94% of patients are expected to survive. Among those who do not survive, approximately half die of Hodgkin's disease, 20% of new cancers, and 14% of cardiovascular complications. Modifications in patient management and treatment have greatly reduced the serious late effects observed from prior therapy. With current combined-modality therapy using moderate doses of involved field of radiation and limited cycles of multiagent, risk adapted chemotherapy, serious cardiac complications and development of secondary cancers are expected to be greatly reduced. The Stanford 25-year pediatric Hodgkin's disease experience reveals that survival in favorable early-stage disease exceeds 95%. Newer protocols for children with advanced-stage disease continue to show these excellent survival rates and promise less late morbidity. Adult protocols using the risk-adapted Stanford V combined-modality program now parallel the pediatric experience, with greater than 90% survival in these patients.Thus today the likelihood of cure of Hodgkin's disease greatly exceeds the risk of late effects, a goal both Dr. Henry Janeway and Madame Marie Curie emphasized and taught from first-hand experience.
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