Background: The safety and efficacy of targeted therapy in older patients (≥ 70 years) with metastatic colorectal cancer is not well evaluated. Patients and Methods: Outcomes of older patients (including overall survival [OS], progression-free survival [PFS], toxicity, and quality of life [QoL]) were compared to young patients using data from 2 large previously reported clinical trials, CO.17 (cetuximab vs. best supportive care) and CO.20 (cetuximab plus placebo vs. cetuximab plus brivanib). Only patients with wild-type KRAS tumors were included. Results: A total of 251 (26.3%) of 955 patients were ≥ 70 years old. No significant differences in OS, PFS, or grade 3/4 adverse events were observed between older and younger patients treated with cetuximab (or cetuximab with placebo) in either trial. Younger patients trended toward superior OS in both CO.17 (hazard ratio = 1.80; P = .16) and CO.20 (hazard ratio = 1.34; P = .07). QoL maintenance favored younger patients in CO.17 (3.6 vs. 5.7 months; P = .046) but no difference of QoL maintenance was observed in the larger CO.20 trial (1.7 vs. 1.8 months; P = .64). Combination therapy of cetuximab and brivanib was significantly more toxic in older adults (87% vs. 77%; P = .03). Conclusion: OS, PFS, and toxicities were similar between older and younger patients with wild-type KRAS metastatic colorectal cancer when treated with cetuximab. Both age groups likely experience similar QoL maintenance with cetuximab. Dual targeted therapy was significantly more toxic in older patients. Clinical trial data were used to evaluate cancer outcomes between older (n = 251) and younger (n = 704) patients with metastatic colorectal cancer who were treated with cetuximab. Overall survival trended toward favoring younger adults, but in general, outcomes, including quality-of-life benefit, were similar between age groups.
- Quality of life