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Decreased Intoxication by Fluorouracil When Slowly Administered in Glucose

Henry M. Lemon, MD; Peter J. Modzen, MD; Rukma Mirchandani, MD; Douglas A. Farmer, MD; John Athans, MD
JAMA. 1963;185(13):1012-1016. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03060130030009.
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Moderate to severe systemic intoxication resulting from rapid intravenous injection of 5-fluorouracil in cancer chemotherapy has been reduced from an incidence of 50% to 60% to 6% in a series of 83 patients by use of infusions in 5% glucose over 8 hours. Doses of 10 to 25 gm per patient per course have been tolerated with minimal toxic reactions. There was objective palliation of metastases in 27% from drug therapy alone, and in a further 10% by treatment combined with hormonal or x-ray therapy. Avoidance of intoxication by slow intravenous infusion has broadened the opportunities for use of this drug in ambulatory therapy of colorectal, biliary tract, ovarian, and mammary cancer.


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