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Korean J Clin Oncol. 2005;1(1): 74-81.
Systemic overview of 5-FU based chemotherapy in colorectal cancer
Woo Yong Lee
Department of Surgery, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
5-FU를 이용한 대장암 항암요법의 전반적 이해
성균관대학교 의과대학 삼성서울병원 외과
Corresponding Author: Woo Yong Lee ,Tel: 82-2-3410-0261, Fax: 82-2-3410-0040, Email: lwy555@smc.samsung.co.kr
Received: May 30, 2005;  Accepted: June 14, 2005.
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Colorectal cancer is a major cause of death leading 400,000 deaths each year. Approximately one-fifth of the cases have metastatic spread at diagnosis, and chemotherapy at this stage can, at best, improve quality of life and prolong life by 6-12 months. The remaining 8% of patients have no macroscopic evidence of residual tumor after curative surgery. However, more than half of these patients develop recurrence and die of their disease. Adjuvant chemotherapy administered after curative resection aims to target micrometastasis and to eradicate them before the can grow into tumor mass. Colorectal cancer is one of tumors where adjuvant treatment has proven to effective. The most commonly use drug for colorectal cancer is 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) whether the purpose is adjuvant or curative. During the past 10 years, there has been development in the use of this agent, including modulation of 5-FU by leucovorin (LV) and administered by continuous infusion. In recent years, new colorectal cancer drugs, such as oxaliplatin, irinotecan, have been developed and showed promising results as a combination therapy with 5-FU. This review illustrates the current status of 5-FU based chemotherapy in colorectal cancer.
Keywords: colorectal cancer | 5-FU | chemotherapy
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