Author(s): Armitage JO, Potter JF
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Twenty patients greater than or equal to 70 years of age were included in a study of the treatment of diffuse histiocytic lymphoma utilizing cyclophosphamide, adriamycin, vincristine, and prednisone. These patients ranged in age from 70 to 94 years (median 75 years). There were also 55 younger patients (age range 33 to 69 years) in the treatment trial. There were no dose adjustments for age. The complete remission rate in the elderly patients (45 per cent) was not different from that in the younger patients (53 per cent). The overall survival in the elderly patients (median 13 months) was somewhat shorter than that in the younger patients (medians 22 months for patients 56-69 years of age and 41 months for patients 33-55 years of age), but not significantly different. Death during the first two treatment cycles from causes other than lymphoma occurred in 25 per cent of the patients greater than or equal to 70 years of age versus 2 per cent of younger patients (P less than 0.01). In addition, three other patients aged 79, 65, and 59 years died in the fourth or fifth cycles of treatment from causes other than lymphoma. Thus, 30 per cent of patients greater than or equal to 70 years of age died during therapy from causes other than lymphoma, versus 5 per cent of younger patients (P less than 0.01). Whether this altered ability to tolerate therapy in the older patients reflected decreased marrow function, altered drug metabolism, other effects of aging, or a combination of these factors is not clear. It might be appropriate to alter drug doses when treating elderly patients, and particular attention to supportive measures seems appropriate.
This article was published in J Am Geriatr Soc
and referenced in Journal of Integrative Oncology