An expert on uveal melanoma reviews the treatment protocol for tebentafusp, which is approved for the treatment of metastatic disease.
How is Kimmtrak administered? What can patients expect from treatment? How are adverse events managed?
Marlana M. Orloff, M.D.: Kimmtrak [tebentafusp] is a weekly IV [intravenous] infusion. Due to the risk of side effects, specifically cytokine release syndrome, the first three doses have to be given in an extended monitored setting where patients are observed for at least 16 hours. During this time, the patient’s vital signs are monitored very closely as there is a risk for low blood pressure, high fever, and low oxygen. Should these occur, patients are managed appropriately, sometimes with things like IV fluids, medication to get the fever down, and in some scenarios, if severe enough, they may require steroids.
For the majority of patients, adverse effects peak during the first three doses, and after the third dose, patients can be safely transitioned to receive their infusion as an outpatient. Most patients following those first three doses do not experience significant adverse effects. One of the more long-term side effects we see for patients who’ve been on tebentafusp for a long time can be things such as whitening of the hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, and skin, which is called vitiligo.
Transcript edited for clarity.