Conclusion: Immune checkpoint inhibitors have revolutionized the treatment of cancer. Despite their benefits, they can cause severe AEs that limit their full therapeutic benefits and result in considerable morbidity and mortality. No clear evidence exists regarding whether aggressive treatment of AEs may impair the benefits of immunotherapy. Additional studies are needed to determine how to adequately control and manage AEs without a detrimental effect on tumor immunity.
Because of concerns of enhanced inflammation and autoimmunity, patients with cancer and prior autoimmune disorders have typically been excluded from receiving checkpoint inhibition therapy. However, until more precise estimates of the potential harms are available, careful consideration of the risks and benefits and individual preferences need to be considered when making decisions regarding therapy for patients with cancer and autoimmune disease.
Excerpted and adapted from:
Suarez-Almazor ME, Kim ST, Abdel-Wahab N, Diab A. Immune-related adverse events with use of checkpoint inhibitors for immunotherapy of cancer. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2017 Apr;69(4):tktk.