Objectives The aim of the present article was to discuss currently available evidence on the impact of frailty assessment on adverse postoperative outcomes and survival in patients undergoing surgery for gynecological cancer.
Methods Systematic search of Medline (PubMed) and Embase databases until September 30, 2020. Key inclusion criteria were: (1) randomized or observational studies; (2) patients undergoing non-emergent surgery for gynecological malignancies; (3) preoperative frailty assessment.
Results Through the process of evidence acquisition, twelve studies including 85,672 patients were selected and six tools were evaluable: 30-item frailty index, 40-item frailty index, modified frailty index (mFI), John Hopkins Adjusted Clinical Groups index, Fried frailty criteria, Driver’s tool. The prevalence of frailty varied roughly from 6.1% to 60% across different series included. The mFI was the most adopted and predictive instrument. Pooled results underlined that frail patients were more likely to develop 30-day postoperative complications (OR, 4.16; 95% CI, 1.49–11.65; p=0.007), non-home discharge (OR, 4.41; 95% CI, 4.09–4.76; p<0.001), ICU admission (OR:3.99; 95% CI, 3.76–4.24; p<0.001) than the non-frail counterpart. Additionally, frail patients experienced worse oncologic outcomes (disease-free and overall survivals) than non-frail patients.
Conclusions The present systematic review demonstrated that preoperative frailty assessment among gynecologic oncology patients is essential to predict adverse outcomes and tailor a personalized treatment. The mFI appeared as the most used and feasible tool in daily practice, suggesting that tailored therapeutic strategies should be considered for patients with 3 or more frailty-defining items.
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