Determinants of fatal bleeding during induction therapy for acute promyelocytic leukemia in the ATRA era

Academic Article


  • Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is commonly complicated by a complex coagulopathy. Uncertainty remains as to which markers of bleeding risk are independent predictors. Drawing from 5 large clinical trials that included all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) as part of induction, we assessed known determinants of bleeding at baseline and evaluated them as potential predictors of hemorrhagic death (HD) in the first 30 days of treatment. The studies included were ALLG APML3 (single arm of ATRA 1 idarubicin 6 prednisone), ALLG APML4 (single arm of ATRA 1 idarubicin 1 arsenic trioxide 1 prednisone), CALGB C9710 (single arm of ATRA 1 cytarabine 1 daunorubicin), Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group-American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ECOG-ACRIN) E2491 (intergroup I0129, consisting of daunorubicin 1 cytarabine vs ATRA), and SWOG S0521 (single-arm induction of ATRA 1 cytarabine 1 daunorubicin). A total of 1009 patients were included in the original trials, of which 995 had sufficient data to be included in our multivariate analysis. In this final cohort, there were 37 HD cases during the first 30 days following induction, for an estimated cumulative incidence of 3.7% (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.6% to 5.0%). Using multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression, the hazard ratio of HD in the first 30 days was 2.17 (95% CI, 0.84-5.62) for an ECOG performance status of 3-4 vs 0-2 and 5.20 (95% CI, 2.70-10.02) for a white blood cell count of ‡20 000/mL vs <20 000/mL. In this large cohort of APL patients, high white blood cell count emerged as an independent predictor of early HD.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Blood  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Mantha S; Goldman DA; Devlin SM; Lee JW; Zannino D; Collins M; Douer D; Iland HJ; Litzow MR; Stein EM
  • Start Page

  • 1763
  • End Page

  • 1767
  • Volume

  • 129
  • Issue

  • 13