The advent of the electronic medical record offers a unique opportunity to perform studies in such a way that the majority of older patients with cancer can be included in research trials. As long as all relevant information related to function, comorbidity, emotional status, and social support is included within the medical record, it may become possible to create precise prognostic models that help deliver personalized care to older patients with cancer. Such is the aim of the project CancerLinQ, which is a system designed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology.32
Age should not be considered a criterion for disqualifying a person with cancer from a clinical trial. Phase 2 trials dedicated to older individuals are necessary to establish the pharmacology of novel agents in the older patient population. Phase 3 trials that study the older patient population should stratify patients according to life expectancy and treatment risks. Registry studies with prospective data collection are necessary to encompass the diversity of all older individuals.
From the Senior Adult Oncology Program at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, Tampa, Florida, and the Department of Oncologic Sciences at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida.
Submitted January 26, 2014; accepted March 13, 2014.
Address correspondence to Lodovico Balducci, MD, 12902 Magnolia Drive, Tampa, FL 33612. E-mail: [email protected]
No significant relationship exists between the author and the companies/organizations whose products or services may be referenced in this article.
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Source: Moffitt Cancer Center.