ESMO Handbook of Cancer in the Senior Patient



The European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) is to be complimented for having decided to dedicate an issue of its “Handbook” series to geriatric oncology. The International Society for Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) has been happy to help in the task of developing this volume, which was initiated by Dirk Schrijvers, Branko Zakotnik, Riccardo Audisio, Hendrik van Halteren, Arti Hurria, and the undersigned. This handbook is not only for Europeans. Cancer is a disease related to ageing, and the proportion of senior patients increases worldwide. While the proportion of persons beyond age 70 is still small in developing countries, their numerous population means that there are more “elderlies” in India than in Europe.

The authors have done a major effort in providing in record time chapters that truly reflect the state of the art in the management of senior adults with cancer. Many questions in this advancing field need considerable work before adequate guidelines can be provided. Nevertheless, progress is being made and is reflected by the contributions.

We recognise that some diseases have not been discussed and interesting topics have not been addressed. This gap is filled by more comprehensive books, and today’s electronic communications allow one to explore any area of interest easily.

The treatment of any patient requires a careful evaluation of the person who is in need of such treatment. This is even truer for the seniors, who have less reserves to cope with cancer and its treatment. Therefore, this handbook leaves ample space for chapters that help in the delicate decision-making process, which should lead to the best therapy, adapted not only to the disease but also to the person who suffers from it.

Annals of Oncology, the official journal of ESMO, and the soon-to-be-launched Journal of Geriatric Oncology, official journal of SIOG, will keep you updated, as will all major medical journals. We know that this handbook, like any book, will need a second edition soon!

My last words go to Dirk, whose enthusiasm made this happen: thank you!

Matti Aapro, SIOG Executive Director


Dirk Schrijvers; Matti Aapro; Branko Zakotnik; Riccardo Audisio; Hendrik van Halteren; Arti Hurria


* CRC Press (formerly Informa Healthcare) are generously offering a 20% discount on all their books (including ESMO handbooks published 2005 - 2011) to all ESMO members. To take full advantage of this offer please contact Dominique McCann at or telephone: +44 (0)20 3377 3590. View the CRC Press catalogue.

Last update: 05 November 2010