Geriatric risk factors for serious COVID-19 outcomes among older adults with cancer: A cohort study from the COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium


Aurora Cancer Care


Background: Older age is associated with poorer outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection, although the heterogeneity of ageing results in some older adults being at greater risk than others. The objective of this study was to quantify the association of a novel geriatric risk index, comprising age, modified Charlson comorbidity index, and Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status, with COVID-19 severity and 30-day mortality among older adults with cancer.

Methods: In this cohort study, we enrolled patients aged 60 years and older with a current or previous cancer diagnosis (excluding those with non-invasive cancers and premalignant or non-malignant conditions) and a current or previous laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis who reported to the COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium (CCC19) multinational, multicentre, registry between March 17, 2020, and June 6, 2021. Patients were also excluded for unknown age, missing data resulting in unknown geriatric risk measure, inadequate data quality, or incomplete follow-up resulting in unknown COVID-19 severity. The exposure of interest was the CCC19 geriatric risk index. The primary outcome was COVID-19 severity and the secondary outcome was 30-day all-cause mortality; both were assessed in the full dataset. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs were estimated from ordinal and binary logistic regression models.

Findings: 5671 patients with cancer and COVID-19 were included in the analysis. Median follow-up time was 56 days (IQR 22-120), and median age was 72 years (IQR 66-79). The CCC19 geriatric risk index identified 2365 (41·7%) patients as standard risk, 2217 (39·1%) patients as intermediate risk, and 1089 (19·2%) as high risk. 36 (0·6%) patients were excluded due to non-calculable geriatric risk index. Compared with standard-risk patients, high-risk patients had significantly higher COVID-19 severity (adjusted OR 7·24; 95% CI 6·20-8·45). 920 (16·2%) of 5671 patients died within 30 days of a COVID-19 diagnosis, including 161 (6·8%) of 2365 standard-risk patients, 409 (18·5%) of 2217 intermediate-risk patients, and 350 (32·1%) of 1089 high-risk patients. High-risk patients had higher adjusted odds of 30-day mortality (adjusted OR 10·7; 95% CI 8·54-13·5) than standard-risk patients.

Interpretation: The CCC19 geriatric risk index was strongly associated with COVID-19 severity and 30-day mortality. Our CCC19 geriatric risk index, based on readily available clinical factors, might provide clinicians with an easy-to-use risk stratification method to identify older adults most at risk for severe COVID-19 as well as mortality.

Funding: US National Institutes of Health National Cancer Institute Cancer Center.



PubMed ID