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Open Access Article

Integrating a Cancer-Specific Geriatric Assessment Into Survivorship Care

Denice Economou
Arti Hurria
Marcia Grant
CJON 2012, 16(3), E78-E85 DOI: 10.1188/12.CJON.E78-E83

Older adults constitute the greatest percentage of cancer survivors in the country, with 61% being aged 65 years and older. Assessing older adult cancer survivors beyond chronological age to include changes in functional status is an essential process to help nurses anticipate cancer treatment impact and aid in planning individualized survivorship care. The objective of this article is to identify a method to assess older adult cancer survivors to be used in tailoring survivorship care. A review of geriatric literature was conducted through MEDLINE® and PubMed from 1997-2011 and focused on the pathophysiology of aging, cancer impact, and comorbidities in this population. Results were combined with previous research to provide an evidence-based approach to assessing older cancer survivors. The resulting assessment provides valuable information on the functional status of older adult patients with cancer. This assessment can be used by nurses to develop treatment plans and tailor management strategies to improve quality of life.

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