[Successful treatment with low-dose etoposide for hemophagocytic syndrome following reduced-intensity conditioning for cord blood transplantation in a patient with acute myelgenous leukemia].
ABSTRACT A 56-year-old man was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia with myelodysplasia-related changes. Chromosomal analysis showed a complex karyotype. Complete remission could not be achieved even after several induction chemotherapy regimens, and the patient suffered from invasive pulmonary aspergillosis. He was transferred to our hospital and underwent reduced-intensity conditioning cord blood transplantation (RIC-CBT) in a non-remission state. The conditioning regimen involved fludarabine 125 mg/m2 combined with melphalan 140 mg/m2 and total body irradiation (4 Gy). GVHD prophylaxis was tacrolimus alone at relatively low concentrations (app. 5 ng/ml). On days 6 and 9 after CBT, he experienced a pre-engraftment immune reaction and hemophagocytic syndrome (HPS). We started steroid pulse therapy, but this failed to resolve the symptoms. We then administered low-dose etoposide (50 mg/m2). The symptoms gradually resolved after three administrations of etoposide and engraftment was achieved on day 35. Satisfactory hematological recovery was noted on day 300 after CBT and the patient has maintained complete remission to date. HPS is one of the most serious complications following CBT and often results in engraftment failure. This case suggests that repeated administration of etoposide may safely and effectively overcome this serious complication in some cases.