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Report questions use of arsenic compound for leukaemia

BMJ 2001; 323 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.323.7307.252/d (Published 04 August 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:252
  1. Scott Gottlieb
  1. New York

    A new report has raised questions about the safety of arsenic trioxide, a compound recently approved in the United States for treating acute promyelocytic leukaemia, a rare subtype of acute myelogenous leukaemia.

    In a study of 10 patients who had leukaemia that had relapsed or had not responded to conventional treatment and who were taking arsenic trioxide, three died suddenly, researchers reported (Blood 2001;98:266-71).

    Even though the compound may provide benefits to some patients with leukaemia, “arsenic trioxide may be significantly, …

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