The Challenge of Selecting Adjuvant Breast Cancer Chemotherapy for Older Patients
June 15, 2010
Dr. Hy Muss is a well recognized expert in the treatment of elderly women with breast cancer, and his article “Adjuvant Chemotherapy of Breast Cancer in the Older Woman” is an extremely important addition to the limited existing literature on this topic. As he points out, nearly half of all breast cancer diagnoses occur in women over 65 years of age. As the total number of women in that demographic increases with the aging of our population, medical oncologists will be faced with a growing number of elderly breast cancer patients, for whom evidence-based recommendations on treatment are needed. As any medical oncologist who sits face-to-face with these older women knows, it is not acceptable to simply tell the patient that there are inadequate data to guide recommendations for adjuvant chemotherapy in her age group, though this is what the EBCTCG (Early Breast Cancer Trialists Collaborative Group) overview has concluded.