Background: The elderly population has increased in many countries. Indications for cancer treatment in elderly patients have expanded, because surgical techniques and medical management have improved remarkably. Pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) requires high-quality techniques and perioperative management methods. If it is possible for elderly patients to withstand an aggressive surgery, age should not be considered a contraindication for PD. Appropriate preoperative evaluation of elderly patients will lead to their safer management. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the safety of PD in patients older than 75 years and to show the influence of advanced age on the morbidity and mortality associated with this operation.Patients and methods: Subjects were 98 patients who underwent PD during the time period from April 2005 to April 2011. During this study, 31 patients were 75 years of age or older (group A), and the other 67 patients were less than 75 years old (group B). Preoperative demographic and clinical data, surgical procedure, pathologic diagnosis, postoperative course and complication details were collected prospectively and they were analyzed in two group.Results: There was no statistical difference between patient groups in terms of gender, comorbidity, preoperative drainage, diagnosis, or laboratory data. Preoperative albumin values were lower in group A (P = 0.04). The mean surgical time in group A was 408.1 ± 73.47 min. Blood loss and blood transfusion were not significantly different between both groups. There was no statistical differences in mortality rate (P = 0.14), morbidity rate (P = 0.43), and mean length of hospital stay (P = 0.22) between both groups.Long-term survival was also no statistically significant difference between the two groups using the log-rank test (P = 0.10).Conclusion: It cannot be ignored that the elderly population is getting larger. We must investigate the management of elderly patients after PD and prepare further for more experiences of PD. If appropriate surgical management is provided to elderly patients, we suggest that PD will lead to no adverse effects after surgery, and PD can be performed safely in elderly patients. We conclude that age should not be a contraindication to PD.
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