We investigated a FLAGIDA-lite protocol (fludarabine 40 mg/m2/d orally days 1–5, cytarabine 20 mg/m2/d subcutaneously days 1–5, G-CSF 300 μg/d subcutaneously days 1–5, and idarrubicin 15 mg/m2/d orally days 1–3) in 38 consecutive patients older than 70 years of age with acute myeloid leukemia (32 patients) or refractory anemia with excess blasts-2 (six patients) and no prior therapy. Seventy-nine percent had intermediate/unfavorable karyotype and 79% had a high comorbidity. Overall response was 55% [complete response (CR) 47%] and 37% were refractory. CR rate was 52% in patients between 71 and 79 years of age and 38% in patients 80 years or older. The 4-week induction mortality was 16% (8% in patients between 70 and 79 years of age and 32% in patients 80 years or older). Overall survival (OS) at 3 years was 22% (31.3% in patients between 70 and 79 years and 15.4% in patients 80 years or older). Relapse-free survival (RFS) at 3 years was 15%. A total of 65 cycles (47 as induction and 18 as consolidation) were administered, 46 of them (70%) in an outpatient setting. In summary, this FLAGIDA-lite protocol is an effective and well-tolerated option for patients between the ages of 70 and 79 years with acute myeloid leukemia or refractory anemia with excess blasts-2 and is usually feasible as outpatient treatment, but is not beneficial for most patients 80 years or older.