The aim of this study was to describe the clinical use of bevacizumab in Lombardy (9.5 million inhabitants), Italy, during 2006-2007 in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) to evaluate compliance with the Italian Medicine Agency (AIFA) indications, the incidence of adverse events, and the survival rate. We performed computerized record linkage among three different Lombardy health care databases: File F registry, Regional discharge database, and Registry Office records. Patients were classified into approved and off-label uses according to the AIFA indications. Treatment with bevacizumab was administered to 780 patients, of whom 81.7% (n = 637) had mCRC. Among these, 37.8% (n = 241) of patients received the drug in observance of AIFA indications. Overall, ∼10% of patients had serious treatment-related toxicities (fistula, 3.5%; venous thromboembolism, 2.8%; hemorrhage, 1.9%; intestinal perforation and arterial thromboembolism, <1%). The 1-year survival rate was 74.3% and the 2-year survival rate was 39.2%. The median survival time was 20.5 months, and there were no meaningful differences between gender and age groups. There was a gap between the bevacizumab approved indication and clinical practice pattern: overall, less than one half of the patients received bevacizumab in observance with the regulatory indication. The main reason for nonadherence to the indication was use as a second-line or advanced line of therapy. The incidence of serious adverse events and the survival rates of mCRC patients were similar to those reported in clinical trials.
Bevacizumab in clinical practice: Prescribing appropriateness relative to national indications and safety / Bonifazi, Martina; Rossi, Marta; Moja, Lorenzo; Scigliano, Vincenzo Davide; Franchi, Matteo; LA VECCHIA, Carlo; Zocchetti, Carlo; Negri, Eva. - In: THE ONCOLOGIST. - ISSN 1083-7159. - ELETTRONICO. - 17:1(2012), pp. 117-124. [10.1634/theoncologist.2011-0184]