Investigational New Drugs

, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 184–187 | Cite as

Bowel perforation in non-small cell lung cancer after bevacizumab therapy

  • Elisabeth SchellhaasEmail author
  • Christoph Loddenkemper
  • Alexander Schmittel
  • Heinz-J. Buhr
  • Uwe Pohlen


Background: Bevacizumab is increasingly used in combination with chemotherapy for treatment of unresectable non-small cell lung cancer. The aim of this report is to underline possible risks associated with this otherwise well-tolerated drug. Patient: A 69-year-old patient with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer was started on a palliative chemotherapy regimen containing carboplatin, paclitaxel, and bevacizumab. Results: After the second cycle of chemotherapy, the patient developed abdominal pain. On emergency laparotomy, there was diffuse perforation of the colonic wall, so the patient underwent a Hartmann's procedure with subtotal colectomy. Histopathological examination confirmed the diagnosis of ischemic colitis. Conclusion: Gastrointestinal perforation is a known adverse event of bevacizumab therapy which so far has occurred only in patients with predisposing risk factors. Our patient illustrates that there must always remain a high index of suspicion regarding bowel perforation in patients developing acute abdominal pain under bevacizumab therapy, even if they have no apparent risk factors.


Bevacizumab Non-small cell lung cancer Bowel perforation Vascular endothelial growth factor Ischemia 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elisabeth Schellhaas
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christoph Loddenkemper
    • 2
  • Alexander Schmittel
    • 3
  • Heinz-J. Buhr
    • 1
  • Uwe Pohlen
    • 1
  1. 1.Chirurgische Klinik I, Charité Campus Benjamin FranklinBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Institut für Pathologie, Charité Campus Benjamin FranklinBerlinGermany
  3. 3.Medizinische Klinik mit Schwerpunkt Hämatologie und Onkologie, Charité Campus Benjamin FranklinBerlinGermany

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