Oral Chemotherapy in Elderly Women with Metastatic Breast Cancer
Life expectancy has significantly increased over the past 30 years, with a greater prevalence of diverse disease states,
especially cancer. As older persons are a very heterogeneous group with an increased prevalence of comorbidities and a relative inability
to tolerate the adverse effects of chemotherapy, the treatment of cancer in the elderly is particularly demanding.
The principles of its management are similar to those in younger patients but with special considerations linked to comorbidities and
clinical status. The objective of chemotherapeutic treatment in metastatic breast cancer has historically been primarily palliative.
The introduction of newer approaches with improved or at least equivalent efficacy and reduced toxicity is highly desirable. Such
approaches may include the use of less toxic drugs, more convenient routes of administration (e.g., oral) and home-based (outpatient)
rather than hospital-based therapies. The available oral cytostatic drugs include vinorelbine and capecitabine. In this review, we analyze
oral cytostatic drugs in the elderly patient diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.
Keywords: Breast cancer, decision-making, elderly, epidemiology, functional status, hormonal receptor status, instrumental activities of daily
living, monotherapy, oral chemotherapy, quality of life.
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