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Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 0,877
Online ISSN 1827-1626
Capra F., Scintu F., Zorcolo L., Casula G.
Aim. To determine the results of elective surgical treatment for colo-rectal cancer in the elderly.
Methods. A total of 746 patients were consequently operated on in elective conditions for colorectal cancer. Patients were divided into 4 groups, according to patient's age: Group A=>=80; Group B=70-79; Group C=60-69; Group D=<=60.
Results. Between older patients there was a higher percentage of right colon cancers (A: 26.3%; B: 13.9%; C: 16.6%; D: 20.6%) and stage D tumors (A: 34.4%; B: 28.3%; C: 21.4%; D: 26%), explaining the greater proportion of palliative surgical treatment in this group of patients (A: 34.7%; B: 28.2%; C: 28.6%; D: 25.7%). There were no differences in term of morbidity (A: 12.6%; B: 9.2%; C: 5.1%; D: 6.4%), mean hospital stay (A: 18.9±16.2 days; B: 17.2±15.8; C: 15.2±8.6; D: 16.8±21.8) and postoperative mortality (A: 3.1%; B: 2.3%; C-D: 0.4%); on the contrary, survival curve in group A was significantly shorter than in the other groups.
Conclusion. Advanced age is not per se a negative prognostic factor and consequently does not represent a contraindication to surgery. In fact, long-term results have been proved to be similar both in young and old patients. Nevertheless, elderly patients have a lower capacity to react to postoperative complications; this needs an accurate evaluation of single patient, considering different parameters such as disease stage, possibility of cure or palliation, quality and expectancy of life.