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Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2011 May;78(2):138-49. doi: 10.1016/j.critrevonc.2010.04.003. Epub 2010 May 4.

Are frailty markers useful for predicting treatment toxicity and mortality in older newly diagnosed cancer patients? Results from a prospective pilot study.

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Solidage Research Group on Frailty and Aging, Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Community Studies, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.



The concept of frailty may be useful to characterize vulnerability. The aim of this pilot study was to explore the association between frailty/functional status and treatment toxicity at 3 months and mortality at 6 months.


Patients aged ≥65 years referred to the Jewish General Hospital, Montreal, with a new cancer diagnosis. Seven frailty markers and 4 functional status measures were examined. Logistic regression was used to examine the association between frailty/functional status and toxicity, and Cox models for time to death.


112 participated, median age 74.1, 31 had toxicity and 15 died. At baseline, 88% had ≥1 frailty marker. Low grip strength predicted toxicity (OR 8.47, 95%CI: 1.3-53.6), ECOG performance status and ADL disability predicted time to death.


The majority had ≥1 frailty marker. Low grip strength predicted toxicity, none of the functional measures did. Further researcher investigating the usefulness of frailty markers is needed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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