Treatment options impact patient outcomes more than age

30 Oct 2017 by under Research/Treatment

220px Effusionhalf1 100x100 Treatment options impact patient outcomes more than ageBecause has such a long latency period, it’s easy to assume that age plays a major factor in patient surgical outcomes. However, a new English study has found being older does not automatically reduce a patient’s odds of benefiting from surgery.

According to Surviving Mesothelioma, researchers found that when all things were equal with the 282 patients in the study, those older than 70 did as well as did those younger after undergoing an extended pleurectomy and decortication (P/D) surgery, which involves removing the pleural lining of the lungs and any visible tumors. “There was no intergroup difference in length of hospital stay or in in-hospital, 30-day or 90-day mortality,” the study states.

The differences between age groups became apparent when the researchers analyzed how often patients were receiving adjuvant treatments. Those include radiation or chemotherapy after surgery to help prevent new cancer cells from developing. “Only 30 percent of the mesothelioma patients over 70 had adjuvant chemotherapy while 45 percent of the younger group did,” the news source reports. “Similarly, only 11 percent of the over-70 mesothelioma patients had neoadjuvant chemotherapy, but more than 21 percent of the under-70 patients did.”

The researchers concluded that improving P/D surgery outcomes rests more on treatment choices and careful patient evaluation than age. “Although age in isolation should not be an exclusion criterion for extended pleurectomy decortication for mesothelioma, in the elderly, a more rigorous preoperative evaluation of nodal disease and an additional assessment of fitness for adjuvant chemotherapy are recommended,” the study states.

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