Effectiveness and Tolerability of First-Line Afatinib for Advanced EGFR-Mutant Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer in Vietnam

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Medical Oncology, Vietnam National Cancer Hospital, Hanoi, Vietnam.

2 Department of Oncology, Vietnam University of Traditional Medicine, Hanoi, Vietnam.

3 Department of Oncology, Hanoi Medical University, Hanoi, Vietnam.


Background: We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness and tolerability of Afatinib as first-line treatment of advanced epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutant non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) in a real-world setting. Patients and methods: This is a retrospective study of Vietnamese patients  with advanced EGFR-mutant NSCLC treated with first-line afatinib at the National Cancer Hospital from 1st January 2018 to 31st October 2020. Patients’ demographic, clinical and treatment data were captured. Objective response rate (ORR), disease control rate (DCR), time to treatment failure (TTF) and tolerability were evaluated. We used Kaplan-Meier curve and log-rank test for survival, and Cox regression model for multivariate analysis. Results: A total of 44 patients were included. Common EGFR mutations (Del 19/L858R) were detected in 61% patients. Fifty percent of patients with uncommon mutations had compound mutations of G719X, L861Q and S768I. The ORR was 75% while DCR rate was 98%. The median TTF was 12.3 months (95% CI: 7.2-17.3); the mTTFs were 12.3 and 10.8 months for patients with common and uncommon mutations (p = 0.001), respectively, and 14.0 and 7.5 months for patients with Del 19 and L858R mutations (p = 0.067), respectively. Afatinib 30 mg once daily was the most common starting (77%) and maintenance (64%) doses. The mTTFs were 12.3 and 7.5 months for patients with 30 mg starting dose vs 40 mg dose (p = 0.256), respectively. Diarrhea, skin rash, paronychia and fatigue were observed in 32%, 30%, 25% and 9%, respectively. There was no grade 4 toxicity except three patients with grade 3 paronychia. Conclusions: First-line afatinib is beneficial for Vietnamese patients with advanced EGFR-mutant NSCLC with a good response rate and prolonged TTF with manageable adverse event profile. Baseline brain metastasis status and starting doses do not significantly impact TTF.


Main Subjects

Volume 22, Issue 5
May 2021
Pages 1581-1590
  • Receive Date: 28 March 2021
  • Revise Date: 01 May 2021
  • Accept Date: 24 May 2021
  • First Publish Date: 24 May 2021