Effectiveness of local therapy for stage I non–small-cell lung cancer in nonagenarians

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Background:Stage I non–small-cell lung cancer is potentially curable, yet older patients undergo treatment at lower rates than younger patients. This analysis sought to describe the treatment outcomes of nonagenarians with stage I non–small-cell lung cancer to better guide treatment decisions in this population.Methods:The National Cancer DataBase was queried for patients age ≥90 years old with stage I non–small-cell lung cancer (tumors ≤4 cm). Patients were divided into 3 groups: local therapy, other therapy, or no treatment. The primary outcomes were 5-year overall and relative survival.Results:Of the 616 patients identified, 33% (202) were treated with local therapy, 34% (207) were treated with other therapy, and 34% (207) underwent no treatment. Compared with local therapy, overall mortality was significantly higher with no treatment (hazard ratio 2.50, 95% confidence interval, 1.95–3.21) and other therapy (hazard ratio 1.43, 95% confidence interval, 1.11–1.83). The 5-year relative survival was 81% for local therapy, 49% for other therapy, and 32% for no treatment (P < .0001).Conclusion:Nonagenarians managed with local therapy for stage I non–small-cell lung cancer (tumors ≤4 cm) have better overall survival than those receiving other therapy or no treatment and should be considered for treatment with either operation or stereotactic body radiation therapy if able to tolerate treatment.

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