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November 11, 1983

Remission of Metastatic Adenocarcinoma of the Colon

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology (Drs C. Shapiro and Bitran), and the Department of Surgery (Dr R. Shapiro), Michael Reese Hospital and Medical Center, Pritzker School of Medicine, Chicago.

JAMA. 1983;250(18):2503-2504. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340180057026

TREATMENT of disseminated colon carcinoma must still be considered experimental.1 Fluorinated pyrimidines, the cornerstone of treatment, yield only a 20% response rate and have had little impact on survival.1 Immunotherapy with BCG vaccine has been reported to produce encouraging results in uncontrolled trials.2 However, the role of immunotherapy in disseminated colonic cancer has yet to be established. We herein report a remission of a patient with metastatic adenocarcinoma of the colon treated with fluorouracil and BCG vaccine.

Report of a Case  A 30-year-old woman was initially seen at the Michael Reese Medical Center, Chicago, in 1967 (aged 18 years) with rectal bleeding. Her father had died of colon cancer at 45 years of age. Roentgenograms of the colon disclosed a mass lesion within the cecum, consistent with adenocarcinoma. An exploratory laparotomy confirmed the diagnosis, and a right-sided hemicolectomy was performed. The tumor extended into the muscularis. Lymph