Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : Treatments currently recommended for metastatic renal cell cancer (mRCC) have not been evaluated specifically in elderly patients. Here we consider what may be learned by analysing according to age the efficacy and toxicity data from key phase III trials of the targeted agents sorafenib (Nexavar), sunitinib (Sutent), temsirolimus (Torisel), and bevacizumab (Avastin), and from a study of expanded access to sunitinib and sorafenib. This paper represents the first systematic review of the role of targeted agents specifically in the elderly population. Retrospective subgroup analyses of clinical trial data cannot be considered definitive. However, they suggest in general that the progression-free and overall survival benefits seen in mRCC patients aged 65 years and over are similar to those in the younger age group. The frequency of major toxicities in elderly patients treated with targeted agents is no greater than in younger patients, although such toxicities may have greater impact on the quality of life. That said, no meaningful data are available for patients over 85 years. To confirm and extend these conclusions, prospective studies should be undertaken in the elderly to determine whether recommendations made for the wider mRCC population apply equally to this group of patients in whom comorbidities, comedication and the greater impact of low-grade toxicity may influence the efficacy and tolerability of treatment. Such studies are increasingly needed, given the growing number of elderly people and their rising life expectancy. Meanwhile, when considering the most appropriate drug to use in a particular patient, the toxicity profiles of the individual targeted agents--and any implications for specific comorbid conditions--should be taken into account.