Clinical Epidemiology and Ageing

Cancer mortality and competing causes of death in older adults with cancer: A prospective, multicentre cohort study (ELCAPA-19).

Assouan D, Paillaud E, Caillet P, Broussier A, Kempf E, Frelaut M, Brain E, Lorisson E, Chambraud C, Bastuji-Garin S, Hanon O, Canoui-Poitrine F, Laurent M, Martinez-Tapia C Cancer Med. 2023;12(22):20940-20952.

BACKGROUND: In older patients with cancer, comorbidities compete with cancer for cause of death. The objectives were to evaluate cancer mortality and factors associated, according to metastatic status.

METHODS: Between 2007 and 2014, patients with cancer aged ≥70 referred for pre-therapeutic geriatric assessment (GA) were included through the ELCAPA prospective cohort study. The underlying cause of death was defined according to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision. The World Health Organisation definition was used to categorise the cause of death as cancer versus another disease (e.g. cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, etc.) Competing risk models were used.

RESULTS: Mean (SD) age of the 1445 included patients was 80.2 (5.8) and 48% were women. Most common tumour sites were colorectal (19%), breast (17%) and urinary (15%); 773 patients (49%) had metastases. After a 34-month median follow-up, 706 cancer deaths were observed among 843 deaths. The 6-month and 3-year cancer mortality rates (95% CI) were 12% (9-15) and 34% (29-38) for non-metastatic patients and 43% (39-47) and 79% (75-82) for metastatic patients, respectively. Dependency in activities of daily living and comorbidities were associated with 6-month and 3-year cancer mortality in non-metastatic (adjusted subhazard ratio [aSHR] = 1.68 [0.99-2.85] and 1.69 [1.16-2.45]; and 1.98 [1.08-3.63] and 3.38 [1.47-7.76], respectively) and metastatic patients (aSHR = 2.81 [2.01-3.93] and 2.95 [2.14-4.07]; and 1.63 [1.18-2.25] and 2.06 [1.39-3.05], respectively). Impaired Timed-Get-Up-and-Go test was associated with 6-month and 3-year cancer mortality in metastatic patients (aSHR = 1.5 [1.06-2.12] and 1.38 [1.06-1.81], respectively). Obesity was negatively associated with 3-year cancer death in non-metastatic (aSHR = 0.53 [0.29-0.97]) and metastatic patients (aSHR = 0.71 [0.51-1.00]).

CONCLUSIONS: The majority of older adults with cancer referred for pre-therapeutic GA die from cancer. Geriatric parameters are independently associated with cancer mortality and should be considered for prognosis assessment, decision-making and care.

MeSH terms: Activities of Daily Living; Aged; Cause of Death; Female; Geriatric Assessment; Humans; Male; Neoplasms; Prospective Studies
DOI: 10.1002/cam4.6639