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Essential drugs for cancer chemotherapy. WHO consultation.



The WHO recommendation on essential drugs for cancer chemotherapy has been updated. General principles on the proper role of cancer chemotherapeutic agents in relation to efficacy and on the classification of tumours with respect to their curative potential are discussed. Curable cancers and those cancers where the cost-benefit ratio clearly favours drug treatment can be managed appropriately based on only 24 drugs. Fourteen of them should ideally be available for the treatment of the ten most common cancers, 8 others should be available only where the resources and facilities exist for the treatment of paediatric tumours and leukaemias, and two drugs were recommended for the treatment of tumours for which there is good evidence that systemic treatment will palliate symptoms but not substantially prolong survival. The adoption of these recommendations should result in considerable reduction in both the mortality and morbidity from cancer throughout the world

Topics: Research Article
Publisher: World Health Organization
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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