BACKGROUND: The number of older patients with cancer is increasing in general, and ovarian and endometrial cancer are to a large extent cancers of the elderly. Older patients with cancer have a high prevalence of comorbidity. Comorbidity and age may be predictive of treatment choice and mortality in older patients with cancer along with stage and performance status.
OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to describe comorbidity in a population of older Danish patients with gynecological cancer, and to evaluate the predictive value of comorbidity and age on treatment choice and cancer-specific and all-cause mortality.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this retrospective study, we included 459 patients aged ≥ 70 years. Patients were diagnosed with cervical, endometrial, or ovarian cancer from 1 January, 2007 to 31 December, 2011 and were evaluated and/or treated at Odense University Hospital. Comorbidity was assessed using the Charlson Comorbidity Index. Treatment was classified as curative intended, palliative intended, or no treatment.
RESULTS: Age, International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) stage, and performance status were found to be significant predictors of treatment choice, while comorbidity was not. Multivariate analyses showed that both cancer-specific and all-cause mortality were significantly associated with treatment choice, FIGO stage, and performance status. Age was not associated with mortality, with the exception of ovarian cancer, where age was associated with all-cause mortality. Comorbidity was not an independent predictor of treatment choice or mortality.
CONCLUSIONS: In our population of older Danish patients with gynecological cancer, age, FIGO stage, and performance status were predictors of treatment choice, while comorbidity was not. Treatment choice, FIGO stage, and performance status were significantly associated with both cancer-specific and all-cause mortality. Age was only associated with mortality in ovarian cancer, while comorbidity was not associated with mortality.