Purpose: Tolvaptan (TVP), a vasopressin receptor antagonist, represents a therapeutic option in the syndrome of inappropriate anti-diuresis (SIAD). The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of TVP to treat and solve hyponatremia in oncologic patients.
Methods: 15 oncologic patients who developed SIAD have been enrolled. Patients receiving TVP belonged to group A, whereas group B was characterized by hyponatremic patients treated with hypertonic saline solutions and fluid restriction.
Results: In group A, the correction of serum sodium was achieved after 3.7±2.8 days. In group B, the target levels were obtained more slowly, after 5.2±3.1 days (p: 0.01) than in group A. The hospital stay and incidence of re-hospitalization were higher in group B than in group A. In this latter, 37% of patients had hyponatremic relapses, notwithstanding the progressive increase of doses from 7.5 to 60 mg per day of TVP, revealing a complete lack of response to TVP. In these patients, a growth of tumor mass or new metastatic lesions has been revealed.
Conclusion: TVP improved hyponatremia more efficiently and stably than hypertonic solutions and fluid restrictions. Positive consequences have been obtained about the rate of chemotherapeutical cycles concluded, hospital stay, rate of relapse of hyponatremia, and re-hospitalization.
Our study also suggested potential prognostic information that could be deduced from TVP patients, in whom sudden and progressive hyponatremia occurred, despite TVP dosage increase. A re-staging of these patients to rule out tumor mass growth or new metastatic lesions is suggested.
Keywords: hyponatremia, paraneoplastic syndrome, syndrome of inappropriate anti-diuresis, tolvaptan, vasopressin