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January 1975

Ancillary Measures in Treatment of Myeloma: Use of Immune Serum Globulin, Fluoride, or Androgen

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine (Drs. Schilling and Finkel); the University Hospital and Boston City Hospital (Dr. Schilling), Boston; and Greater Lawrence Community Comprehensive Cancer Program, Lawrence, Mass (Dr. Finkel).

Arch Intern Med. 1975;135(1):193-196. doi:10.1001/archinte.1975.00330010195025

We reviewed the efficacy of three agents advocated as ancillary therapy in myeloma patients. Intramuscularly administered immune serum globulin (gamma globulin) was ineffective in preventing infection. Hemoglobin level was improved in some myeloma patients receiving androgens. However, the response rate and the degree of leukopenia or thrombocytopenia were not superior with androgen-melphalan-prednisone combination therapy, as compared with those resulting from the two-drug combination without androgen. A controlled study evaluating androgen plus melphalan has not been done. The long-term administration of fluoride, supplemented by calcium and androgen, induced radiologically apparent bone fluorosis, but strengthening of lytic bone was not observed. Neither objective nor subjective benefit was demonstrated in a controlled study comparing the effects of fluoride (without calcium supplement) with those of the placebo.

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