Upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopies in patients over 85 years of age: Risk-benefit evaluation of a longitudinal cohort.

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Upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopies in patients over 85 years of age: Risk-benefit evaluation of a longitudinal cohort.

Medicine (Baltimore). 2017 Nov;96(44):e8439

Authors: Clere-Jehl R, Schaeffer M, Vogel T, Kiesmann M, Pasquali JL, Andres E, Bourgarit A, Goichot B

Abstract
After age 85, upper and lower gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy may be indicated in 5% to 10% of inpatients, but the risk-benefit ratio is unknown. We studied patients older than 85 years undergoing upper and lower GI endoscopy.We analyzed a retrospective cohort of inpatients older than 85 years between 2004 and 2012, all explored by upper and complete lower GI endoscopy. Initial indications, including iron deficiency anemia (IDA), other anemias, GI bleeding, weight loss, and GI symptoms, were noted, as were endoscopy or anesthesia complications, immediate endoscopic diagnosis, and the ability to modify the patients' therapeutics. Deaths and final diagnosis for initial endoscopic indication were analyzed after at least 12 months.We included 55 patients, 78% women, with a median age, reticulocyte count, hemoglobin, and ferritin levels of 87 (85-99), 56 (24-214) g/L, 8.6 (4.8-12.9) g/dL, and 56 (3-799) μg/L, respectively. IDA was the most frequent indication for endoscopy (60%; n = 33). Immediate diagnoses were found in 64% of the patients (n = 35), including 25% with GI cancers (n = 14) and 22% with gastroduodenal ulcers or erosions (n = 12). Cancer diagnosis was associated with lower reticulocyte count (45 vs. 60 G/L; P = .02). Among the 35 diagnoses, 94% (n = 33) led to modifications of the patients' therapeutics, with 29% of the patients deciding on palliative care (n = 10). No endoscopic complications lead to death. Follow-up of >12 months was available in 82% (n = 45) of the patients; among these patients, 40% (n = 27) died after an average 24 ± 18 months. Cancer diagnosis was significantly associated with less ulterior red cell transfusion (0% vs. 28%; P = .02) and fewer further investigations (6.7% vs. 40%; P = .02).Upper and complete lower GI endoscopy in patients older than 85 years appears to be safe, and enables a high rate of immediate diagnosis, with significant modifications of therapeutics. GI cancers represented more than one-third of the endoscopic diagnoses.

PMID: 29095285 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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