Symptom assessment in elderly cancer patients receiving palliative care

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Elderly cancer patients (those over 60 or 65) have a disproportionate cancer incidence and mortality, and a multitude of symptoms from their cancer, other illnesses, and treatments. We reviewed the literature to find some practical advice for health care professionals to do symptom assessments in routine practice. Patients and methods: Systematic and directed literature review. Results: The available symptom assessment tools are useable, well validated, and in common use but not in the older patient population. Several studies show that if a symptom assessment tool is used, more symptoms will be uncovered and that these tools can be used in routine practice, comparative clinical trials, and to show clinical benefit for new drug approval. Data are not sufficient to choose one tool over another, but all of them work and can uncover symptoms that can be fixed. We believe that it is important to have predetermined best practices for preventing and fixing common symptoms. Conclusion: Symptom assessments and geriatric assessments are useful tools in everyday practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbermdt269
Pages (from-to)vii25-vii29
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Volume24
Issue numberSUPPLEMENT7
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology

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