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Revista Española de Enfermedades Digestivas

versión impresa ISSN 1130-0108


ARENAL VERA, Juan José et al. Colorectal cancer in the elderly: characteristics and short term results. Rev. esp. enferm. dig. [online]. 2011, vol.103, n.8, pp.408-415. ISSN 1130-0108.

Objective: to analyse the characteristics of colorectal cancer in elderly patients and to assess the outcomes of treatment. Material and methods: the study included 1,924 patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer during a 22 year period (1985-2007). We analysed patient clinical and demographic characteristics as well as their treatment and its outcome. Results: there was an increase in emergency surgery with age, increasing from 13% among patients under 80 years of age to 47% in those over 90 years of age (p = 0.0001). On the other hand, the overall percentage of patients who underwent surgical treatment decreased from 96% in patients younger than 80 years of age, to 85% and 59% in octogenarians and nonagenarians, respectively (p = 0.0001), and there was a similar pattern in the rates of curative surgery among patients who underwent surgery. The overall mortality of patients who underwent surgery was 8% (141 out of 1,769), increasing from 4% in patients younger than 70 years of age to 25% in those over 90 (p = 0.0001). Multivariate analysis showed that the factors associated with mortality were the emergency nature of the surgery (p = 0.001), the ASA grade (p = 0.0001), and the presence of systemic complications (p = 0.0001), the weight of age decreasing significantly with respect to the univariate analysis (p = 0.013). Conclusions: there is an increase in the rate of complicated forms of colorectal cancer with increasing age of patients. In addition, there is a dramatic decrease in the rate of curative tumour resection with increasing age. Intraoperative mortality for colorectal cancer in octogenarians and nonagenarians is more closely related to the nature and intent of the surgery (elective or emergency; palliative or curative), the perioperative risk (ASA grade), and severe systemic complications, than to age.

Palabras clave : Colorectal cancer; Octogenarians; Nonagenarians; Mortality.

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