Nine patients with advanced stages of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) received aggressive chemotherapy with high-dose cytarabine or with a standard acute myeloid leukemic regimen. Six of them were in frank acute myeloid leukemic phase. The mean age was 57 years (range 32–71). Seven patients obtained remission, 6 complete remission (CR) and 1 partial remission. The induction remission rate was 77.7%. There were 2 deaths in the aplasia period because of infectious complications. The mean duration aplasia was 36 days (range 21–69). In spite of this all responders received further consolidation chemotherapy. The mean duration of CR was 10 months. We concluded that patients with MDS with excess of blasts and blastic transformation may be treated with aggressive chemotherapy with low toxicity and high remission rate, similarly to de novo acute myeloid leukemia.

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