Older women are at higher risk for developing breast cancer than younger women are–almost half of all breast cancer cases, and most breast cancer deaths, occur in women who are 65 or older. Despite this, we know very little about how breast cancer and its treatments affect older women. In particular, we don’t fully understand how the disease and chemotherapy treatments affect a woman’s ability to function and perform daily activities.
For older adults, knowing how chemotherapy may affect you is important, especially if there’s a chance it could affect your ability to live independently. Understanding your risk for such problems would be good information to have when it comes to choosing treatments.
To learn more about how breast cancer and its treatments might affect older women’s abilities to function, a team of researchers designed a study. They published their results in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
The researchers reviewed information from an earlier study, which included 633 women aged 65 or older who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. That study compared the effectiveness of two different chemotherapy treatments. Researchers of that study asked participants questions, including:
In their new study, the researchers’ goal was to learn about changes
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