Adjuvant Therapy Recommendations for Breast Cancer Drop Between Ages 69 and 70

FRIDAY, Feb. 3, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Between ages 69 and 70 years, there is a decline in adjuvant therapy recommendations for early breast cancer, according to a study published online Jan. 31 in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics.

Wesley J. Talcott, M.D., from Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut, and colleagues identified two cohorts with strong indications for adjuvant treatment, regardless of age, who underwent lumpectomy for early-stage breast cancer between 2004 and 2017. Cohort 1 (160,990 participants) had higher-risk features and was appropriate for radiation. Cohort 2 (394,946 participants) had hormone receptor positivity with tumors >5 mm and was appropriate for endocrine therapy.

The researchers found that the radiation recommendation among cohort 1 declined sharply at age 70 years, from 90 to 92 percent for those aged 50 to 69 years to 81 percent for those aged 70 years. At age 70 versus 69 years only, year-over-year age difference was an independent predictor of adjuvant radiation recommendation (odds ratio, 0.47). A small decline in endocrine therapy recommendation was seen at age 70 years for cohort 2, with year-over-year age difference a predictor of endocrine therapy recommendation at age 70 versus 69 years only (odds ratio, 0.86).

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“Our study indicates that physicians should be mindful of how we factor age into treatment decisions and adopt a more nuanced approach, extending beyond defining patients as simply ‘young’ or ‘elderly,'” Talcott said in a statement.

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