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Does a geriatric oncology consultation modify the cancer treatment plan for elderly patients?



Does a geriatric oncology consultation modify the cancer treatment plan for elderly patients?



Journals of Gerontology. Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 63(7): 724-730



This study was performed to describe the treatment plan modifications after a geriatric oncology clinic. Assessment of health and functional status and cancer assessment was performed in older cancer patients referred to a cancer center. Between June 2004 and May 2005, 105 patients 70 years old or older referred to a geriatric oncology consultation at the Institut Curie cancer center were included. Functional status, nutritional status, mood, mobility, comorbidity, medication, social support, and place of residence were assessed. Oncology data and treatment decisions were recorded before and after this consultation. Data were analyzed for a possible correlation between one domain of the assessment and modification of the treatment plan. Patient characteristics included a median age of 79 years and a predominance of women with breast cancer. About one half of patients had an independent functional status. Nearly 15% presented severe undernourishment. Depression was suspected in 53.1% of cases. One third of these patients had >2 chronic diseases, and 74% of patients took > or =3 medications. Of the 93 patients with an initial treatment decision, the treatment plan was modified for 38.7% of cases after this assessment. Only body mass index and the absence of depressive symptoms were associated with a modification of the treatment plan. The geriatric oncology consultation led to a modification of the cancer treatment plan in more than one third of cases. Further studies are needed to determine whether these modifications improve the outcome of these older patients.

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Accession: 052686177

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PMID: 18693227

DOI: 10.1093/gerona/63.7.724


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