Older Adults with Cancer

Risk for cancer increases with age. Nearly 60% of new cancers are diagnosed in individuals over the age of 65. For older adults, a cancer diagnosis may be just one of several stressors. Older adults with cancer are more likely to have additional medical conditions complicating their cancer treatment. They may also have unique caregiving needs or even be a caregiver to another family member. Lastly, reliable transportation to treatment and access to regular nutritional meals can be common barriers to optimal cancer care.

Patients and their support network (i.e., spouse, family, friends, etc.) may benefit from a consult with an oncology social worker about managing the emotional, social, and practical needs that are common for older adults with cancer during treatment. An oncology dietitian may also help address nutritional issues.

The following resources can help older adults with cancer as well as their caregivers.

For more information on resources for cancer patients and families, please visit the Patient and Family Learning Center