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Clinical Trial to Evaluate Short-term Efficacy of Palliative Methylphenidate in Asthenia in Advanced Cancer Patients

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Last updated:8th Oct 2012
Fatigue is the most prevalent symptom in advanced cancer patients, interfering functional capacity, social relations, wellbeing, and quality of life. Methylphenidate is a central nervous system stimulant that has traditionally been used in cancer patients to manage depression, opioid?induced sedation, hypoactive delirium due to multiorgan failure, and cognitive disorder associated with brain tumors. Although there is evidence from prospective studies of the efficacy of this drug in cancer?related fatigue, the only one randomised clinical trials gave non-conclusive results. In order to define the real efficacy of methylphenidate in this setting, the investigators designed a new clinical trial comparing methylphenidate and placebo in cancer?related fatigue, assessed both by the verbal numeric scale (VNS) included in the Edmonton Symptom Assessment System (ESAS) and the subscale for fatigue of the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy (FACT?F). The investigators will include 122 advanced cancer patients with fatigue ? 5/10 (VNS, from 0 to 10) and hemoglobin ? 9 g/dl. Patients will be randomized to methylphenidate or placebo. Doses will be adapted to response within a range from 10 mg at morning time and 5 at noon, to 25 mg/day. Assessment of response will be performed on day 3 and day 6 with ESAS and FACT?F. Drug?induced adverse events will be checked. The VNS of fatigue on day 6 will be consider the primary endpoint.
Category Value
Study start date 2012-10-08

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