Objectives: Most patients with small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) experience relapse because of the emergence of drug-resistant tumor cells. Therefore, second-line therapy is subsequently required to prolong their survival. However, it is unclear whether second-line chemotherapy can provide a survival benefit to elderly patients with relapsed SCLC. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate survival and identify prognostic factors in an elderly population. Materials and methods: Based on a nationwide registry database of patients with SCLC (the Japanese Joint Committee of Lung Cancer Registry), we retrospectively reviewed medical records of patients aged ≥ 75 years with relapsed SCLC who subsequently received second-line chemotherapy. Survival time since the initiation of second-line chemotherapy was evaluated. Results: Among 731 patients aged ≥ 75 years with SCLC who were accumulated by the nationwide registry database, this study included 228 patients, comprising 190 men and 38 women with a median age of 78 years. The number of patients with performance status (PS) of 0−1 and 2−4 was 196 and 32, respectively. The overall survival (OS) and 1-year survival rates were 7.5 months and 24 %, respectively. A multivariate analysis identified PS, clinical stage at the time of starting first-line therapy, and the interval from the start of first-line therapy to that of second-line therapy as independent prognostic factors. Conclusion: This study with the nationwide registry database showed that among the relapsed elderly SCLC patients who received second-line chemotherapy, a substantial OS may be expected in patients with good PS, at an early clinical stage at the time of starting first-line therapy, and with a longer interval from the start of first-line therapy to that of second-line chemotherapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cancer Research