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MASCC Geriatrics Study Group


Chair: Christopher Steer, MBBS, FRACP ( - Australia
Vice-Chair: Holly Holmes, MD ( - USA

Study Group Minutes
2016 Minutesalt - Annual Meeting - Adelaide, Australia

Mission and Goals

The Geriatric Study Group will promote and collaboratively support the inclusion of a Geriatric Oncology focus within MASCC with the overall goal of enhancing best practices in cancer supportive clinical care. Our Goals are the following:

  • To function independently and collaboratively within MASCC with regard to the identification and resolution of geriatric oncology-centered cancer supportive care issues;
  • To serve as an expertise resource for MASCC study groups and the MASCC leadership;
  • To foster the understanding and appreciation of the underlying principles of geriatrics-focused cancer supportive care;
  • To promote enhanced communication and potential collaboration with external professional societies that have, or might develop, a focus on geriatric oncology supportive care; 
  • To advocate for the inclusion of geriatric oncology-centered supportive care research into the universal comprehensive cancer care research agenda; and
  • To establish guidelines for the management of cancer-treatment complications that affect the geriatric oncology population.

2017 Workshop

2017 Annual Meeting Workshop, June 22, Washington, DC
Communication Challenges in Geriatric Oncology: Perspectives of Patients, Family Caregivers, and Healthcare Professionals
The purpose of this workshop is to foster interdisciplinary learning and skills practice in the area of communication and quality of life with a focus on older patients and family caregivers. The workshop format will include interactive and experiential learning exercises, such as role playing, video triggers to facilitate group discussion, and demonstration of communication skills by expert facilitators. Several case studies will be discussed. These will focus on communication and strategies for improving the patient experience throughout the cancer trajectory. 

This workshop will be offered jointly by the following MASCC Study Groups: Geriatrics; Psychosocial.
Workshop Chairs: Christopher Steer, Lidia Schiapira, Penny Schofield, Fran Boyle, Holly Holmes, Belinda Kiely

Past Workshops

Recent Member Publications

Management of Cancer in the Older Age Person: An Approach to Complex Medical Decisions. Vallet-Regí M, Manzano M, Rodriguez-Mañas L, Checa López M, Aapro M, Balducci L. Oncologist. 2017 Feb 20. [Epub ahead of print]

Geriatric factors and outcomes in metastatic colorectal cancer. Papamichael D, Aapro M.Eur J Cancer. 2017 Feb 10. [Epub ahead of print]

Management of Prostate Cancer in Elderly Patients: Recommendations of a Task Force of the International Society of Geriatric Oncology. Droz JP, Albrand G, Gillessen S, Hughes S, Mottet N, Oudard S, Payne H, Puts M, Zulian G, Balducci L, Aapro M. Eur Urol. 2017 Jan 11. [Epub ahead of print]

Chemotherapy treatment decision-making experiences of older adults with cancer, their family members, oncologists and family physicians: a mixed methods study. Puts MT, Sattar S, McWatters K, Lee K, Kulik M, MacDonald ME et al. Support Care Cancer. 2017 Mar;25(3):879-886. Free PMC Article.

Bone health in the elderly cancer patient: A SIOG position paper. Body JJ, Terpos E, Tombal B, Hadji P, Arif A, Young A, Aapro M, Coleman R. Cancer Treat Rev. 2016 Dec;51:46-53.

Chemotherapy-induced (febrile) neutropenia prophylaxis with biosimilar filgrastim in elderly versus non-elderly cancer patients: Patterns, outcomes, and determinants (MONITOR-GCSF study). Aapro M, Bokemeyer C, Ludwig H, Gascón P, Boccadoro M, Denhaerynck K, Gorray M, Krendyukov A, MacDonald K, Abraham I. J Geriatr Oncol. 2016 Nov 6. [Epub ahead of print]  Free Article.

Incorporating Geriatric Medicine Providers into the Care of the Older Adult with Cancer. Magnuson A, Canin B, van Londen GJ, Edwards B, Bakalarski P, Parker I. Curr Oncol Rep. 2016 Nov;18(11):65.

Polypharmacy and potentially inappropriate medication use in geriatric oncology. Sharma M, Loh KP, Nightingale G, Mohile SG, Holmes HM. J Geriatr Oncol. 2016 Sep;7(5):346-53.

Falls in older adults with cancer: a systematic review of prevalence, injurious falls, and impact on cancer treatment. Sattar S, Alibhai SM, Spoelstra SL, Fazelzad R, Puts MT. Support Care Cancer. 2016 Oct;24(10):4459-69.

Supportive Care in Older Adults with Cancer: Across the Continuum. Koll T, Pergolotti M, Holmes HM, Pieters HC, van Londen GJ, Marcum ZA, MacKenzie AR, Steer CB. Curr Oncol Rep. 2016 Aug;18(8):51.

Geriatric assessment with management in cancer care: Current evidence and potential mechanisms for future research. Magnuson A, Allore H, Cohen HJ, Mohile SG, Williams GR, Chapman A et al. J Geriatr Oncol. 2016 Jul;7(4):242-8.

Supportive care in older adults with cancer - An update of research in 2015. Steer CB. J Geriatr Oncol. 2016 Sep;7(5):397-403.

A Research Agenda for Gero-Oncology Nursing. Van Cleave JH, Kenis C, Sattar S, Jabloo VG, Ayala AP, Puts M.Semin Oncol Nurs. 2016 Feb;32(1):55-64.

The Evolution of Gero-Oncology Nursing. Bond SM, Bryant AL, Puts M. Semin Oncol Nurs. 2016 Feb;32(1):3-15. Free PMC Article

Trends in gynecologic cancer among elderly women in Denmark, 1980-2012. Ør Knudsen A, Schledermann D, Nyvang GB, Mogensen O, Herrstedt J; Academy of Geriatric Cancer Research (AgeCare). Acta Oncol. 2016;55 Suppl 1:65-73.

Trends in cancer in the elderly population in Denmark, 1980-2012. Ewertz M, Christensen K, Engholm G, Kejs AM, Lund L, Matzen LE, Pfeiffer P, Storm HH, Herrstedt J; Academy of Geriatric Cancer Research (AgeCare). Acta Oncol. 2016;55 Suppl 1:1-6.

Geriatric assessment for oncologists. Korc-Grodzicki B, Holmes HM, Shahrokni A. Cancer Biol Med. 2015 Dec;12(4):261-74. Free PMC Article.

Surgical geriatric oncology: It is time for interventions. Puts M, Alibhai SM. J Geriatr Oncol. 2015 Sep;6(5):341-3.

Oral single-agent chemotherapy in older patients with solid tumours: A position paper from the International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG). Biganzoli, L, Lichtman, S, Michel, J-P, Papamichael D, Quoix E, Walko C, Aapro M. Eur J Cancer. 2015 Sep [Epub ahead of print] Review.

Approach to therapy of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in the elderly: the International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) expert position commentary. Morrison VA, Hamlin P, Soubeyran P, Stauder R, Wadhwa P, Aapro M, Lichtman SM.  Ann Oncol. 2015 Jun;26(6):1058-68.

Geriatric assessment of older patients with cancer in Australia--a multicentre audit. Lakhanpal R, Yoong J, Joshi S, Yip D, Mileshkin L, Marx GM et al.  J Geriatr Oncol. 2015 May;6(3):185-93.

An interprofessionally developed geriatric oncology curriculum for hematology-oncology fellows. Eid A, Hughes C, Karuturi M, Reyes C, Yorio J, Holmes H. J Geriatr Oncol. 2015 Mar;6(2):165-73.

Treatment of colorectal cancer in older patients: International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) consensus recommendations 2013. Papamichael D, Audisio RA, Glimelius B, de Gramont A, Glynne-Jones R, Haller D et al. Ann Oncol. 2015 Mar;26(3):463-476.

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in the elderly: impact of prognosis, comorbidities, geriatric assessment, and supportive care on clinical practice. An International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) expert position paper. Morrison VA, Hamlin P, Soubeyran P, Stauder R, Wadhwa P, Aapro M, Lichtman S. J Geriatr Oncol. 2015 Mar;6(2):141-52.

Screening tools for multidimensional health problems warranting a geriatric assessment in older cancer patients: an update on SIOG recommendations. Decoster L, Van Puyvelde K, Mohile S, Wedding U, Basso U, Colloca G, et al. Ann Oncol. 2015 Feb;26(2):288-300.


The International Society of Geriatric Oncology, or Société Internationale d’Oncologie Gériatrique, is a multidisciplinary medical society of physicians in the fields of oncology and geriatrics, along with other allied health professionals. The Society has over 1,500 members in more than 40 countries around the world. Its goal is to foster the development of health professionals in geriatric oncology, in order to optimize treatment of older adults with cancer. Visit the Society’s website for more information:

AgeCare®, an Elite Research Center based in the Department of Oncology, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark, is directed by Jørn Herrstedt, MD, DMSc. The center aims to optimize cancer therapy and supportive care for older cancer patients through a wide range of research projects. Its staff includes physicians in numerous specialties, medical physicists, and nurses. The team also collaborates with translational researchers, molecular biologists, and clinical pharmacologists at the University of Southern Denmark, as well as other national and international centers. AgeCare works with other groups and societies at the intersection of geriatric oncology and supportive care. These include the Cancer and Aging Research Group and the International Society for Geriatric Oncology, as well as MASCC. >>Read more

Bone Health in Elderly Cancer Patients: A SIOG Position Paper
MASCC members Matti Aapro, Jean-Jacques Body, and Annie Young are members of an International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) Task Force on bone protection in older patients with cancer. The work of the Task Force has led to a recent SIOG position paper: Bone Health in the Elderly Cancer Patient (Body JJ et al. Cancer Treat Rev, 2016 Dec;51:46-53; follow link for full text). The paper includes general recommendations for the use of bone-modifying agents, recommendations (with grades of evidence) for managing bone metastases in breast and prostate cancer, recommendations from the European Myeloma Network for the management of bone-related complications, and recommendations for nursing care as part of the multidisciplinary management of elderly patients with bone metastases.

A Perspective on Cancer Care for Older Patients
Lodovico Balducci, of the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, US, and Matti Aapro, of the Multidisciplinary Oncology Institute, Genolier, Switzerland, share their perspective on cancer care for older patients in a paper titled “Complicated and Complex: Helping the Older Patient with Cancer to Exit the Labyrinth.” The authors distinguish between, and stress the importance of, the complications and complexities involved in treating older cancer patients. They also propose a five-step strategy for negotiating the complexities and offer suggestions for building more reliable assessment instruments with the goal of maximizing benefits of treatment while minimizing the risks for this vulnerable population. This paper, published in the Journal of Geriatric Oncology, is free online at the journal’s website: J Geriatr Oncol. 2014 Jan;5(1):116-8.


ESMO Handbook of Cancer in the Senior Patient - Editors: Dirk Schrijvers, Matti Aapro, Branko Zakotnik, Riccardo Audisio, Hendrik van Halteren, Arti Hurria. 2010

Please contact the Study Group Chairs above with your questions.
MASCC Study Group Coordinator, Don Gubitosa