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Human development index linked to stem cell transplant rates and success in leukemia patients
Date:4/15/2010

(WASHINGTON, April 15, 2010) The socioeconomic status of a country has long been considered a potentially significant factor in the availability of high-quality health-care interventions and even a determinant of long-term patient outcomes. A new study from the Acute Leukemia Working Party of the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation reports that in Europe, socioeconomic factors have a direct correlation to the rates and outcomes of stem cell transplantation for patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). This study was published online today in Blood, the official journal of the American Society of Hematology.

"Stem cell transplantation is an expensive procedure requiring well-equipped transplant units; advanced, long-term supportive care; and highly qualified medical and nursing staff, so it may be expected that access to these transplants as well as outcome of the procedure would depend on socioeconomic factors varying among and within countries," said lead study author Sebastian Giebel, MD, of the Department of Clinical and Experimental Oncology at the Comprehensive Cancer Center of the Maria Sklowdowska-Curie Memorial Institute in Gliwice, Poland.

In this study, a team of researchers led by Dr. Giebel evaluated the association of the Human Development Index (HDI) with rates and outcomes (both short- and long-term) of AML patients treated with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Using data on 16,403 patients from 30 European countries between 2001-2005, the team compared socioeconomic status with HSCT procedure rates. They then analyzed long-term outcomes (primarily leukemia-free survival, or LFS) related to HSCT for a sub-group of 2,015 AML patients who had received an HLA-matched allogeneic (using donor cells rather than one's own cells) HSCT.

The HDI is used by
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Contact: Patrick C. Irelan
pirelan@hematology.org
202-776-0544
American Society of Hematology
Source:Eurekalert

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