Publications by authors named "Nicole Bodmer"

18 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Predicting fever in neutropenia with safety-relevant events in children undergoing chemotherapy for cancer: The prospective multicenter SPOG 2015 FN Definition Study.

Pediatr Blood Cancer 2021 Jul 26:e29253. Epub 2021 Jul 26.

Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, Inselspital, Bern University Hospital, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Background: Fever in neutropenia (FN) remains a frequent complication in pediatric patients undergoing chemotherapy for cancer. Preventive strategies, like primary antibiotic prophylaxis, need to be evidence-based.

Procedure: Data on pediatric patients with any malignancy from the prospective multicenter SPOG 2015 FN Definition Study (NCT02324231) were analyzed. A score predicting the risk to develop FN with safety-relevant events (SRE; bacteremia, severe sepsis, intensive care unit admission, death) was developed using multivariate mixed Poisson regression. Its predictive performance was assessed by internal cross-validation and compared with the performance of published rules.

Results: In 238 patients, 318 FN episodes were recorded, including 53 (17%) with bacteremia and 68 (21%) with SRE. The risk-prediction score used three variables: chemotherapy intensity, defined according to the expected duration of severe neutropenia, time since diagnosis, and type of malignancy. Its cross-validated performance, assessed by the time needed to cover (TNC) one event, exceeded the performance of published rules. A clinically useful score threshold of ≥11 resulted in 2.3% time at risk and 4.1 months TNC. Using external information on efficacy and timing of intermittent antibiotic prophylaxis, 4.3 months of prophylaxis were needed to prevent one FN with bacteremia, and 5.2 months to prevent one FN with SRE, using a threshold of ≥11.

Conclusions: This score, based on three routinely accessible characteristics, accurately identifies pediatric patients at risk to develop FN with SRE during chemotherapy. The score can help to design clinical decision rules on targeted primary antibiotic prophylaxis and corresponding efficacy studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pbc.29253DOI Listing
July 2021

Inotuzumab ozogamicin in infants and young children with relapsed or refractory acute lymphoblastic leukaemia: a case series.

Br J Haematol 2021 06 2;193(6):1172-1177. Epub 2021 Feb 2.

Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

No data on inotuzumab ozogamicin (InO) in infant acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) have been published to date. We collected data internationally on infants/young children (<3 years) with ALL treated with InO. Fifteen patients (median 4.4 months at diagnosis) received InO due to relapsed or refractory (R/R) disease. Median percentage of CD22 blasts was 72% (range 40-100%, n = 9). The median dose in the first course was 1.74 mg/m (fractionated). Seven patients (47%) achieved complete remission; one additional minimal residual disease (MRD)-positive patient became MRD-negative. Six-month overall survival was 47% (95% confidence interval [CI] 27-80%). Two patients developed veno-occlusive disease after transplant. Further evaluation of InO in this subgroup of ALL is justified.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjh.17333DOI Listing
June 2021

Lineage-restricted sympathoadrenal progenitors confer neuroblastoma origin and its tumorigenicity.

Oncotarget 2020 Jun 16;11(24):2357-2371. Epub 2020 Jun 16.

Department of Medical Oncology and Hematology, University Hospital Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland.

Neuroblastoma (NB) is the most common cancer in infants and it accounts for six percent of all pediatric malignancies. There are several hypotheses proposed on the origins of NB. While there is little genetic evidence to support this, the prevailing model is that NB originates from neural crest stem cells (NCSCs). Utilizing mouse models, we demonstrate that targeting oncogene to NCSCs causes perinatal lethality. During sympathoadrenal (SA) lineage development, SOX transcriptional factors drive the transition from NCSCs to lineage-specific progenitors, characterized by the sequential activation of genes. We find the NCSCs factor SOX10 is not expressed in neuroblasts, but rather restricted to the Schwannian stroma and is associated with a good prognosis. On the other hand, SOX9 expression in NB cells was associated with several key biological processes including migration, invasion and differentiation. Moreover, manipulating gene predominantly affects lineage-restricted SA progenitors. Our findings highlight a unique molecular SOX signature associated with NB that is highly reminiscent of SA progenitor transcriptional program during embryonic development, providing novel insights into NB pathobiology. In summary, we provide multiple lines of evidence suggesting that multipotent NCSCs do not contribute to NB initiation and maintenance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.27636DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7299536PMC
June 2020

39·0°C versus 38·5°C ear temperature as fever limit in children with neutropenia undergoing chemotherapy for cancer: a multicentre, cluster-randomised, multiple-crossover, non-inferiority trial.

Lancet Child Adolesc Health 2020 07 1;4(7):495-502. Epub 2020 Jun 1.

Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Inselspital, Bern University Hospital, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland. Electronic address:

Background: Fever in neutropenia is the most frequent complication of chemotherapy for cancer. The temperature limit defining fever used clinically varies. A higher limit can avoid unnecessary diagnoses in patients spontaneously recovering from fever. This trial primarily aimed to determine if a limit of 39·0°C ear temperature is non-inferior to 38·5°C regarding safety.

Methods: This cluster-randomised, multiple crossover, non-blinded, non-inferiority trial was done in six Swiss Paediatric Oncology Group centres (clusters) in Switzerland. Patients (aged 1 to <18 years) with any malignancy and treated with myelosuppressive chemotherapy expected to last 2 months or more were repeatedly randomly assigned (1:1), at the cluster level, to either monthly 39·0°C or 38·5°C ear temperature limits for diagnosis of fever in neutropenia. Diagnosis below the randomised limit was allowed for clinical reasons. Such a diagnosis implied emergency hospitalisation, examinations (including blood culture), as-needed antipyretics, and empirical intravenous broad-spectrum antibiotics. The primary outcome was the rate of fever in neutropenia with safety relevant events (SRE) per chemotherapy year; we also assessed efficacy in terms of rate of fever in neutropenia. The non-inferiority margin was 1·33 for safety, and for effiacy, the superiority margin was 1·00. This trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT02324231.

Findings: 269 patients were recruited between April 28, 2016, to Aug 27, 2018, until the trial was stopped for success after the second interim analysis. Patients were repeatedly randomly assigned, with 1210 (48%) of 2547 randomisation periods and 92 (47%) of 195 chemotherapy years randomised to 39·0°C. SREs were diagnosed in 72 (20%) of 360 fever in neutropenia episodes (zero deaths, 16 intensive care unit admissions, 22 cases of severe sepsis, and 56 cases of bacteraemia). In 92 chemotherapy years randomised to the 39·0°C fever limit, 151 episodes of fever with neutropenia were diagnosed (1·64 per year), including 22 (15%) with SRE (0·24 per year). In 103 chemotherapy years randomised to 38·5°C, 209 episodes were diagnosed (2·03 per year), including 50 (24%) with SRE (0·49 per year). The mixed Poisson regression rate ratio (RR) of fever in neutropenia with SRE in 39·0°C versus 38·5°C was 0·56 (95% upper confidence bound 0·72). The corresponding RR of fever in neutropenia was 0·83 (95% upper confidence bound 0·98).

Interpretation: In children with neutropenia and chemotherapy for cancer, 39·0°C ear temperature was safe and seemed efficacious. For Switzerland and comparable settings, 39·0°C can be recommended as new evidence-based standard fever limit except for patients with acute myeloid leukaemia or haematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

Funding: Swiss Cancer League (KLS-3645-02-2015).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2352-4642(20)30092-4DOI Listing
July 2020

Relapses and treatment-related events contributed equally to poor prognosis in children with ABL-class fusion positive B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia treated according to AIEOP-BFM protocols.

Haematologica 2020 07 10;105(7):1887-1894. Epub 2019 Oct 10.

Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Department, Ruth Rappaport Children's Hospital, Rambam Health Care Campus, Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel.

ABL-class fusions other than characterize around 2-3% of precursor B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Case series indicated that patients suffering from these subtypes have a dismal outcome and may benefit from the introduction of tyrosine kinase inhibitors. We analyzed clinical characteristics and outcome of 46 ABL-class fusion positive cases other than treated according to AIEOP-BFM (Associazione Italiana di Ematologia-Oncologia Pediatrica-Berlin-Frankfurt-Münster) ALL 2000 and 2009 protocols; 13 of them received a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) during different phases of treatment. ABL-class fusion positive cases had a poor early treatment response: minimal residual disease levels of ≥5×10 were observed in 71.4% of patients after induction treatment and in 51.2% after consolidation phase. For the entire cohort of 46 cases, the 5-year probability of event-free survival was 49.1+8.9% and that of overall survival 69.6+7.8%; the cumulative incidence of relapse was 25.6+8.2% and treatment-related mortality (TRM) 20.8+6.8%. One out of 13 cases with TKI added to chemotherapy relapsed while eight of 33 cases without TKI treatment suffered from relapse, including six in 17 patients who had not received hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Stem cell transplantation seems to be effective in preventing relapses (only three relapses in 25 patients), but was associated with a very high TRM (6 patients). These data indicate a major need for an early identification of ABL-class fusion positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia cases and to establish a properly designed, controlled study aimed at investigating the use of TKI, the appropriate chemotherapy backbone and the role of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. (Registered at: .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2019.231720DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7327633PMC
July 2020

Exploring the association of hemoglobin level and adverse events in children with cancer presenting with fever in neutropenia.

PLoS One 2014 14;9(7):e101696. Epub 2014 Jul 14.

Division of Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.

Background: In children and adolescents with fever in neutropenia (FN) during chemotherapy for cancer, hemoglobin ≥90 g/L at presentation with FN had been associated with adverse events (AE). This analysis explored three hypothetical pathophysiological mechanisms potentially explaining this counterintuitive finding, and further analyzed the statistical association between hemoglobin and AE.

Methods: Two of 8 centers, reporting on 311 of 421 FN episodes in 138 of 215 patients participated in this retrospective analysis based on prospectively collected data from three databases (SPOG 2003 FN, transfusion and hematology laboratories). Associations with AE were analyzed using mixed logistic regression.

Results: Hemoglobin was ≥90 g/L in 141 (45%) of 311 FN episodes, specifically in 59/103 (57%) episodes with AE, and in 82/208 (39%) without (OR, 2.3; 99%CI, 1.1-4.9; P = 0.004). In FN with AE, hemoglobin was bimodally distributed with a dip around 85 g/L. There were no significant interactions for center, age and sex. In multivariate mixed logistic regression, AE was significantly and independently associated with leukopenia (leukocytes <0.3 G/L; OR, 3.3; 99%CI, 1.1-99; P = 0.004), dehydration (hemoglobinPresentation/hemoglobin8-72 hours ≥1.10 in untransfused patients; OR, 3.5; 99%CI, 1.1-11.4; P = 0.006) and non-moderate anemia (difference from 85 g/L; 1.6 per 10 g/L; 1.0-2.6; P = 0.005), but not with recent transfusion of packed red blood cells (pRBC), very recent transfusion of pRBC or platelets, or with hemoglobin ≥90 g/L as such.

Conclusions: Non-moderate anemia and dehydration were significantly and relevantly associated with the risk of AE in children with cancer and FN. These results need validation in prospective cohorts before clinical implementation.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0101696PLOS
April 2016

A prospective multicenter study of microbiologically defined infections in pediatric cancer patients with fever and neutropenia: Swiss Pediatric Oncology Group 2003 fever and neutropenia study.

Pediatr Infect Dis J 2014 Sep;33(9):e219-25

From the *Department of Pediatrics; †Institute for Infectious Diseases, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland; ‡Division of Pediatric Oncology, University Children's Hospital, Freiburg, Germany; §Division of Pediatric Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Aachen, Aachen, Germany; ¶Division of Infectious Diseases and Hospital Epidemiology; ‖Division of Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland; **Department of Pediatric Oncology and Hematology, Saarland University Hospital, Homburg, Saarland, Germany; ††Department of Infectious Diseases, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland; ‡‡Division of Clinical Microbiology, University Hospital Basel, Basel, Switzerland; §§Rehabilitation Center Katharinenhoehe, Schoenwald, Germany; ¶¶Division of Oncology/Hematology, Department of Pediatrics, University Children's Hospital, Basel, Switzerland; and ‖‖Department of Pediatrics, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Background: Fever and neutropenia (FN) often complicate anticancer treatment and can be caused by potentially fatal infections. Knowledge of pathogen distribution is paramount for optimal patient management.

Methods: Microbiologically defined infections (MDI) in pediatric cancer patients presenting with FN by nonmyeloablative chemotherapy enrolled in a prospective multicenter study were analyzed. Effectiveness of empiric antibiotic therapy in FN episodes with bacteremia was assessed taking into consideration recently published treatment guidelines for pediatric patients with FN.

Results: MDI were identified in a minority (22%) of pediatric cancer patients with FN. In patients with, compared with patients without MDI, fever [median, 5 (interquartile range: 3-8) vs. 2 (interquartile range: 1-3) days, P < 0.001] and hospitalization [10 (6-14) vs. 5 (3-8) days, P < 0.001] lasted longer, transfer to the intensive care unit was more likely [13 of 95 (14%) vs. 7 of 346 (2.0%), P < 0.001], and antibiotics were given longer [10 (7-14) vs. 5 (4-7) days, P < 0.001]. Empiric antibiotic therapy in FN episodes with bacteremia was highly effective if not only intrinsic and reported antimicrobial susceptibilities were considered but also the purposeful omission of coverage for coagulase-negative staphylococci and enterococci was taken into account [81% (95% confidence interval: 68-90) vs. 96.6% (95% confidence interval: 87-99.4), P = 0.004].

Conclusions: MDI were identified in a minority of FN episodes but they significantly affected management and the clinical course of pediatric cancer patients. Compliance with published guidelines was associated with effectiveness of empiric antibiotic therapy in FN episodes with bacteremia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/INF.0000000000000326DOI Listing
September 2014

Serum Concentrations of Mannan-Binding Lectin (MBL) and MBL-Associated Serine Protease-2 and the Risk of Adverse Events in Pediatric Patients With Cancer and Fever in Neutropenia.

J Pediatric Infect Dis Soc 2013 Jun 13;2(2):155-61. Epub 2013 Feb 13.

University Children's Hospital, Zurich, Switzerland;

Background: It is unknown whether serum concentrations of mannan-binding lectin (MBL) and MBL-associated serine protease-2 (MASP-2) influence the risk of adverse events (AEs) in children with cancer presenting with fever in neutropenia (FN).

Methods: Pediatric patients with cancer presenting with FN after non-myeloablative chemotherapy were observed in a prospective multicenter study. Mannan-binding lectin and MASP-2 were measured using commercially available enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in serum taken at cancer diagnosis. Multiple FN episodes per patient were allowed. Associations of MBL and MASP-2 with AE in general, with bacteremia, and with serious medical complications (SMC) during FN were analyzed using mixed logistic regression.

Results: Of 278 FN episodes, AE was reported in 84 (30%), bacteremia was reported in 42 (15%), and SMC was reported in 16 (5.8%). Median MBL was 2152 ng/mL (range, 7-10 060). It was very low (<100) in 11 (9%) patients, low (100-999) in 36 (29%) patients, and normal (≥1000) in 79 (63%) patients. Median MASP-2 was 410 ng/mL (range, 68-2771). It was low (<200) in 18 (14%) patients and normal in the remaining 108 (86%) patients. Mannan-binding lectin and MASP-2 were not significantly associated with AE or bacteremia. Normal versus low MBL was independently associated with a significantly higher risk of SMC (multivariate odds ratio, 12.8; 95% confidence interval, 1.01-163; P = .050).

Conclusions: Mannan-binding lectin and MASP-2 serum concentrations were not found to predict the risk to develop AEs or bacteremia during FN. Normal MBL was associated with an increased risk of SMC during FN. This finding, in line with earlier studies, does not support the concept of MBL supplementation in MBL-deficient children with cancer presenting with FN.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jpids/pit005DOI Listing
June 2013

Different fever definitions and the rate of fever and neutropenia diagnosed in children with cancer: a retrospective two-center cohort study.

Pediatr Blood Cancer 2013 May 28;60(5):799-805. Epub 2012 Nov 28.

Department of Pediatrics, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Background: The definition of fever, and thus fever and neutropenia (FN), varies between different pediatric oncology centers. Higher temperature limit should reduce FN rates, but may increase rates of FN with complications by delaying therapy. This study determined if different fever definitions are associated with different FN rates.

Procedure: Two pediatric oncology centers had used three fever definitions in 2004-2011: ear temperature ≥38.5 °C persisting ≥2 hours (low definition); axillary temperature ≥38.5 °C ≥ 2 hours or ≥39.0 °C once (middle); and ear temperature ≥39.0 °C once (high). Clinical information was retrospectively extracted from charts. FN rates were compared using mixed Poisson regression.

Results: In 521 pediatric patients with cancer, 783 FN were recorded during 6,009 months cumulative chemotherapy exposure time (501 years; rate, 0.13/month [95% CI, 0.12-0.14]), 124 of them with bacteremia (16%; 0.021/month [0.017-0.025]). In univariate analysis, the high versus low fever definition was associated with a lower FN rate (0.10/month [0.08-0.11] vs. 0.15/month [0.13-0.16]; rate ratio, 0.66 [0.45-0.97]; P = 0.036), the middle definition was intermediate (0.13/month [0.11-0.15]). This difference was not confirmed in multivariate analysis (rate ratio, 0.94 [0.67-1.33]; P = 0.74). The high versus low definition was not associated with an increased rate of FN with bacteremia (multivariate rate ratio, 1.39 [0.53-3.62]; P = 0.50).

Conclusion: A higher fever definition was not associated with a lower FN rate, nor with an increased rate of FN with bacteremia. These may be false negative findings due to methodological limitations. These questions, with their potential impact on health-related quality of life, and on costs, need to be assessed in prospective studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pbc.24380DOI Listing
May 2013

First-day step-down to oral outpatient treatment versus continued standard treatment in children with cancer and low-risk fever in neutropenia. A randomized controlled trial within the multicenter SPOG 2003 FN study.

Pediatr Blood Cancer 2012 Sep 23;59(3):423-30. Epub 2012 Jan 23.

Department of Pediatrics, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Background: The standard treatment of fever in chemotherapy-induced neutropenia (FN) includes emergency hospitalization and empirical intravenous antimicrobial therapy. This study determined if first-day step-down to oral outpatient treatment is not inferior to continued standard regarding safety and efficacy in children with low-risk FN.

Procedure: In a randomized controlled non-blinded multicenter study, pediatric patients with FN after non-myeloablative chemotherapy were reassessed after 8-22 hours of inpatient intravenous antimicrobial therapy. Low-risk patients were randomized to first-day step-down to experimental (outpatient, oral amoxicillin plus ciprofloxacin) versus continued standard treatment. Exact non-inferiority tests were used for safety (no serious medical complication; non-inferiority margin of difference, 3.5%) and efficacy (resolution of infection without recurrence, no modification of antimicrobial therapy, no adverse event; 10%).

Results: In 93 (26%) of 355 potentially eligible FN episodes low-risk criteria were fulfilled, and 62 were randomized, 28 to experimental (1 lost to follow-up) and 34 to standard treatment. In intention-to-treat analyses, non-inferiority was not proven for safety [27 of 27 (100%) vs. 33 of 34 (97%; 1 death) episodes; 95% upper confidence border, 6.7%; P = 0.11], but non-inferiority was proven for efficacy [23 of 27 (85%) vs. 26 of 34 (76%) episodes; 95% upper confidence border, 9.4%; P = 0.045]. Per-protocol analyses confirmed these results.

Conclusions: In children with low-risk FN, the efficacy of first-day step-down to oral antimicrobial therapy with amoxicillin and ciprofloxacin in an outpatient setting was non-inferior to continued hospitalization and intravenous antimicrobial therapy. The safety of this procedure, however, was not assessable with sufficient power.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pbc.24076DOI Listing
September 2012

Serious medical complications in children with cancer and fever in chemotherapy-induced neutropenia: results of the prospective multicenter SPOG 2003 FN study.

Pediatr Blood Cancer 2012 Jul 11;59(1):90-5. Epub 2011 Aug 11.

Department of Pediatrics, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Background: Fever and chemotherapy-induced neutropenia (FN) is the most frequent potentially lethal complication of therapy in children with cancer. This study aimed to describe serious medical complications (SMC) in children with FN regarding incidence, clinical spectrum, and associated characteristics.

Procedure: Pediatric patients presenting with FN induced by non-myeloablative chemotherapy were observed in a prospective multicenter study. SMC was defined as potentially life-threatening complication (PLTC), transfer to the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU), or death.

Results: A total of 443 FN episodes were reported from 8 centers. Of these, 411 episodes were reported from 4 centers recruiting consecutively and without bias regarding the risk of complications. They were used for calculation of proportions. An SMC was reported in 23 episodes [5.6%; 95% confidence interval (CI): 3.7-8.1], usually defined by more than one criterion. These were PLTC in 13 episodes, PICU in 22, and death in 3 (mortality, 0.7%; 95% CI: 0.2-2.1). Both a delayed onset of SMC (14 of 23 episodes, 61%) and a biphasic clinical course (11 of 23, 48%) were frequently observed. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, 4 characteristics were significantly and independently associated with the risk of SMC: diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia, interval since chemotherapy ≤7 days, severely reduced general condition, and hemoglobin ≥9.0 g/dl at presentation.

Conclusions: In children with FN, SMC were rare, and mortality was very low. Those with SMC often had a delayed onset and biphasic clinical course with secondary deterioration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pbc.23277DOI Listing
July 2012

Predicting bacteremia in children with cancer and fever in chemotherapy-induced neutropenia: results of the prospective multicenter SPOG 2003 FN study.

Pediatr Infect Dis J 2011 Jul;30(7):e114-9

Department of Pediatrics, University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland.

Study Aim: To develop a score predicting the risk of bacteremia in cancer patients with fever and neutropenia (FN), and to evaluate its performance.

Methods: Pediatric patients with cancer presenting with FN induced by nonmyeloablative chemotherapy were observed in a prospective multicenter study. A score predicting the risk of bacteremia was developed from a multivariate mixed logistic regression model. Its cross-validated predictive performance was compared with that of published risk prediction rules.

Results: Bacteremia was reported in 67 (16%) of 423 FN episodes. In 34 episodes (8%), bacteremia became known only after reassessment after 8 to 24 hours of inpatient management. Predicting bacteremia at reassessment was better than prediction at presentation with FN. A differential leukocyte count did not increase the predictive performance. The reassessment score predicting future bacteremia in 390 episodes without known bacteremia used the following 4 variables: hemoglobin ≥ 90 g/L at presentation (weight 3), platelet count <50 G/L (3), shaking chills (5), and other need for inpatient treatment or observation according to the treating physician (3). Applying a threshold ≥ 3, the score--simplified into a low-risk checklist--predicted bacteremia with 100% sensitivity, with 54 episodes (13%) classified as low-risk, and a specificity of 15%.

Conclusions: This reassessment score, simplified into a low-risk checklist of 4 routinely accessible characteristics, identifies pediatric patients with FN at risk for bacteremia. It has the potential to contribute to the reduction of use of antimicrobials in, and to shorten the length of hospital stays of pediatric patients with cancer and FN.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/INF.0b013e318215a290DOI Listing
July 2011

Osteosarcoma in very young children: experience of the Cooperative Osteosarcoma Study Group.

Cancer 2010 Nov;116(22):5316-24

St. Anna Children's Hospital, Vienna, Austria.

Background: This study was conducted to investigate presentation, treatment, and outcome in very young children with osteosarcoma.

Methods: The authors retrospectively analyzed the data of 2706 consecutive COSS patients with newly diagnosed osteosarcoma and identified 28 (1.0%) patients aged younger than 5 years at diagnosis. Demographic, diagnostic, tumor, treatment-related variables, response, and survival data were analyzed.

Results: Of the 28 preschoolers, 27 presented with high-grade central osteosarcoma of an extremity, and 1 had a secondary osteosarcoma of the orbit. This analysis focused on the 27 patients with extremity tumors. The size of the primary was large (≥one-third of the involved bone) in 20 of 27 patients. Primary metastases were detected in 4 of 27 children. All patients received multiagent chemotherapy, and 11 of 18 analyzed tumors responded well (>90% necrosis) to neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Limb-sparing surgery was performed in 9 cases, ablative procedures were performed in 15, and, in 3 cases, no local surgery was performed. With a median follow-up of 4 years (6.2 years for survivors), 13 patients were alive. Four patients never achieved a complete remission, and 11 developed recurrences; 14 of these 15 patients died. Five-year overall and event-free survival probabilities were 51% (standard error of the mean [SE], 10%) and 48% (SE, 10%). Better survival was correlated with good response to chemotherapy and later time period of diagnosis.

Conclusions: Osteosarcoma is extremely rare in preschool children. These patients often have large tumors that may require mutilating resections. Prognosis is in the range of that reported for older patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cncr.25287DOI Listing
November 2010

Predicting adverse events in children with fever and chemotherapy-induced neutropenia: the prospective multicenter SPOG 2003 FN study.

J Clin Oncol 2010 Apr 15;28(12):2008-14. Epub 2010 Mar 15.

Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, University of Bern, Inselspital, CH-3010 Bern, Switzerland.

PURPOSE To develop a score predicting the risk of adverse events (AEs) in pediatric patients with cancer who experience fever and neutropenia (FN) and to evaluate its performance. PATIENTS AND METHODS Pediatric patients with cancer presenting with FN induced by nonmyeloablative chemotherapy were observed in a prospective multicenter study. A score predicting the risk of future AEs (ie, serious medical complication, microbiologically defined infection, radiologically confirmed pneumonia) was developed from a multivariate mixed logistic regression model. Its cross-validated predictive performance was compared with that of published risk prediction rules. Results An AE was reported in 122 (29%) of 423 FN episodes. In 57 episodes (13%), the first AE was known only after reassessment after 8 to 24 hours of inpatient management. Predicting AE at reassessment was better than prediction at presentation with FN. A differential leukocyte count did not increase the predictive performance. The score predicting future AE in 358 episodes without known AE at reassessment used the following four variables: preceding chemotherapy more intensive than acute lymphoblastic leukemia maintenance (weight = 4), hemoglobin > or = 90 g/L (weight = 5), leukocyte count less than 0.3 G/L (weight = 3), and platelet count less than 50 G/L (weight = 3). A score (sum of weights) > or = 9 predicted future AEs. The cross-validated performance of this score exceeded the performance of published risk prediction rules. At an overall sensitivity of 92%, 35% of the episodes were classified as low risk, with a specificity of 45% and a negative predictive value of 93%. CONCLUSION This score, based on four routinely accessible characteristics, accurately identifies pediatric patients with cancer with FN at risk for AEs after reassessment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.2009.25.8988DOI Listing
April 2010

Conservative management of acute appendicitis in children with hematologic malignancies during chemotherapy-induced neutropenia.

J Pediatr Hematol Oncol 2008 Jun;30(6):464-7

Department of Pediatric Oncology, University Children's Hospital, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland.

The management of acute appendicitis in the febrile neutropenic patient after intensive chemotherapy is controversial. We report our single-center-experience of 5 children diagnosed with appendicitis during febrile neutropenia after chemotherapy for acute leukemia or lymphoma. All patients presented with an isolated appendicitis without signs of overt mucositis or more diffuse enterocolitis. The clinical diagnosis was confirmed by ultrasonography. Perforation with retrocecal abscess was present in 1 patient. Administration of combination antimicrobial regimens including meropenem resulted in complete resolution in all patients. Our observations indicate that acute appendicitis in clinically stable neutropenic cancer patients can be managed conservatively without surgery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MPH.0b013e318168e7cbDOI Listing
June 2008

A psychoeducational intervention reduces the need for anesthesia during radiotherapy for young childhood cancer patients.

Radiat Oncol 2008 Jun 4;3:17. Epub 2008 Jun 4.

University Children's Hospital of Zurich, Department of Oncology, Steinwiesstr, 75, 8032 Zurich, Switzerland.

Background: Radiotherapy (RT) has become an important treatment modality in pediatric oncology, but its delivery to young children with cancer is challenging and general anesthesia is often needed.

Methods: To evaluate whether a psychoeducational intervention might reduce the need for anesthesia, 223 consecutive pediatric cancer patients receiving 4141 RT fractions during 244 RT courses between February 1989 and January 2006 were studied. Whereas in 154 RT courses corresponding with 2580 RT fractions patients received no psychoeducational intervention (group A), 90 RT courses respectively 1561 RT fractions were accomplished by using psychoeducational intervention (group B). This tailored psychoeducational intervention in group B included a play program and interactive support by a trained nurse according to age to get familiar with staff, equipment and procedure of radiotherapy.

Results: Group A did not differ significantly from group B in age at RT, gender, diagnosis, localization of RT and positioning during RT. Whereas 33 (21.4%) patients in group A got anesthesia, only 8 (8.9%) patients in group B needed anesthesia. The median age of cooperating patients without anesthesia decreased from 3.2 to 2.7 years. In both uni- and multivariate analyses the psychoeducational intervention significantly and independently reduced the need for anesthesia.

Conclusion: We conclude that a specifically tailored psychoeducational intervention is able to reduce the need for anesthesia in children undergoing RT for cancer. This results in lower costs and increased cooperation during RT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1748-717X-3-17DOI Listing
June 2008
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