Many of the standard treatments for Burkitt lymphoma and other types of aggressive lymphomas cause serious side effects that require long stays in the hospital. An investigational approach called “dose-adjusted” EPOCH with or without rituximab (R) has been developed for treating these cancers and does not appear to cause the same severity of side effects or require long hospital stays. With dose-adjusted therapy, the doctor monitors the patient’s blood counts and side effects and adjusts the doses of the drugs accordingly during each cycle of therapy.
The purpose of this study is to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of dose-adjusted EPOCH with and without rituximab in patients with untreated Burkitt lymphoma, DLBCL, or plasmablastic lymphoma. EPOCH includes the drugs etoposide, prednisone, vincristine, cyclophosphamide, and doxorubicin. Rituximab is a standard drug used to treat lymphoma. Patients in this study will receive dose-adjusted EPOCH with or without rituximab of varying doses and cycles depending on the aggressiveness and type of their lymphoma.