Dr Giuseppe Saglio Compares Efficacy, Safety of Nilotinib With Imatinib for CML Patients

Although nilotinib as a first-line therapy for chronic myelogenous leukemia is a more effective treatment than imatinib, nilotinib's side effects are too much for patients.

Although nilotinib as a first-line therapy for chronic myelogenous leukemia is a more effective treatment than imatinib, nilotinib’s side effects are too much for patients, according to a study from Novartis presented at the 56th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology.

Giuseppe Saglio, MD, one of the co-authors on the study and a professor of internal medicine at the University of Turin in Italy, explained that while just 10% of patients who stopped imatinib did so because of side effects, 20% of patients on nilotinib stopped treatment because of side effects.

“So I think, probably, we have to reconsider all this data to suggest which is the best appropriate treatment and particular dosage of the drug as first-line therapy,” Dr Saglio said.