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Pediatrics Study Discredits “Kind and Gentle” Chemo Approach for Kids with Leukemia

For decades, children have received chemotherapy over days, rather than minutes, under the assumption the “kinder and gentler” approach would protect their hearts from long-term, often deadly, cardiac complications associated with the potent drugs.

But a study led by Miller School researchers and published online today in the journal Pediatrics found that the slow, continuous infusion of doxorubicin, a drug that has dramatically improved the leukemia survival rate, does not provide youngsters with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) any more cardioprotection than rapid infusion.

Both infusion methods, the multicenter study found, are equally toxic to young hearts.

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