AffiliationDepartment of Medical Oncology, Cork University Hospital, Wilton, Cork., firstname.lastname@example.org
Antineoplastic Agents/*therapeutic use
Carcinoma, Merkel Cell/diagnosis/*drug therapy
Skin Neoplasms/diagnosis/*drug therapy
MetadataShow full item record
CitationIr J Med Sci. 2005 Jan-Mar;174(1):58-60.
JournalIrish journal of medical science
AbstractBACKGROUND: Merkel cell cancer (MCC) is an uncommon neuroendocrine skin cancer occurring predominantly in elderly Caucasians. It tends to metastasize to regional lymph nodes and viscera and is sensitive to chemotherapy but recurs rapidly. AIM: To report one such case, its response to chemotherapy and briefly review the literature. METHODS: A 73-year-old male with a fungating primary lesion on his left knee and ulcerated inguinal lymph nodes was diagnosed with MCC and treated with chemotherapy. The two largest case series and reviews of case reports were summarised. RESULTS: His ulcer healed after two cycles of carboplatin and etoposide with improvement in quality of life. Overall response rates of nearly 60% to chemotherapy are reported but median survival is only nine months with metastatic disease. CONCLUSIONS: Chemotherapy should be considered for fit elderly patients with MCC who have recurrent or advanced disease.