Prostate cancer commonly affects older men, with one out of five patients being diagnosed at 75 years or older. Elderly patients are more likely to have reduced performance and nutritional status, increased comorbidities, polypharmacy, and altered host-dependent pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. Moreover, elderly patients are often underrepresented in clinical trials, mainly because of comorbidities and decline in performance status. The International Society of Geriatric Oncology recommends management of elderly patients according to fitness and personal preference, rather than chronological age. Since androgen signaling has a nodal role in prostate cancer progression, androgen-targeting agents remain the mainstay of systemic therapy for this disease. However, the potential benefit of these treatments may be compromised by toxicity, especially in elderly patients. Hence, management decisions require evidence-based consideration of both potential benefits and risks on an individualized basis. Furthermore, especially elderly patients should undergo geriatric screening and must be actively monitored during treatment to detect adverse events early and prevent complications. A personalized and vigilant approach could provide the elderly patient with the optimal benefits of existing and emerging prostate cancer treatments, while sparing them the risks of excessive toxicity and avoiding overtreatment.
Drugs & aging. 2019 Jun 07 [Epub ahead of print]
Myrto Boukovala, Nicholas Spetsieris, Eleni Efstathiou
Department of Genitourinary Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 1155 Pressler Street, Houston, TX, 77030, USA., Department of Genitourinary Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 1155 Pressler Street, Houston, TX, 77030, USA. .