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Use of cisplatin for elderly patients

Lichtman, S M; Buchholtz, M; Marino, J; Schulman, P; Allen, S L; Weiselberg, L; Budman, D; DeMarco, L; Schuster, M; Lovecchio, J
The ageing of the population has resulted in a greater emphasis on cancer treatment effects in elderly patients. This population has often had arbitrary dose modification of chemotherapy owing to fear of excessive side-effects. A review was undertaken to evaluate cisplatin toxicity in patients of 70 years of age or older. Thirty-four patients were evaluated. Their mean age was 72.8 years and 85.3% were women. Fourteen of 34 (41%) patients completed the planned therapy. Treatment was terminated because of disease progression (35%), renal toxicity (9%) and non-renal toxicity (15%). Our conclusion is that cisplatin can safely be administered to elderly patients. Arbitrary dose modification or elimination of cisplatin from a treatment programme on the grounds of patient age alone is not justified.
PMID: 1615783
ISSN: 0002-0729
CID: 759242