The outcome of patients with relapsed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains unsatisfactory, with few available effective therapies. Increased understanding of the biology of the disease has led to the identification of novel therapeutic agents, several of which have been evaluated in recently conducted clinical trials. We sought to determine whether the introduction of these agents as well as modern supportive care measures has already translated to better outcomes. We examined the outcomes of 1,056 patients with AML in first relapse treated between January 1993 and December 2013 at our institution. As previously reported, the independent prognostic factors for survival after first relapse included age at relapse, cytogenetics, and duration of first complete remission. Upon multivariable analysis, treatment era was an independent predictor of survival, with significant improvement in overall survival between 2008 and 2013 as compared to prior time periods. Modern supportive care measures as well as participation in clinical trials of novel agents are already improving the outcomes in first relapse.
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