Even with advances in therapeutic options, treating older adults with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains challenging. In this podcast, the presenters discuss differences in adults of the same age based on underlying health status and physiologic reserve. Because of these differences, they reason, decision making and management cannot be optimized using strategies based on chronologic age alone. Instead, they recommend using a geriatric assessment to better characterize a patient’s health status and to guide treatment decision making and management to offer personalized care for older adults with AML.
Geriatric assessment can guide decision making in three ways:
- Providing critical information – Knowing more about the patient contributes to a more informed discussion with the patient and family.
- Predicting clinically-relevant outcomes – Information and results of the assessment can determine appropriate treatment options.
- Guiding supportive care interventions – Use of interventions such as exercise or cognitive behavioral therapies when appropriate may lead to tolerance or improvements during treatment and in the ongoing survivorship phase.
The presenters concluded that geriatric assessment is a multi-dimensional strategy that provides a comprehensive evaluation of health status that can inform decision making and management of older adults with acute leukemia.