Interferon a

The success of using IFN-a in managing Ph-positive CML98 and clinicopathological similarities between CML and HES (particularly its proliferative variant) have prompted trials of IFN-a in the management of HES. The first report of a successful response in a patient with HES was followed by a series of mostly case reports, some associated with literature reviews.99-107 The initial dose of IFN-a varied between 1 and 5 million units/m2 subcuta-neously, daily, 5 days/week, and was adjusted according to the patient's tolerance. As with most of the trials in this patient population, the estimations of response rates, duration of responses, and the effect on existing end-organ damage or prevention of its development were plagued by the limited size of the treated population, the disease's heterogeneity, the limited follow-up, and the lack of a control population treated with the "standard of care" (i.e., steroids plus hydroxyurea).

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