Who's too old for major treatment? Age not always a barrier

AP News
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Posted: Dec 13, 2015 10:25 AM

CHICAGO (AP) — Jimmy Carter is the latest example that very old age is no longer an automatic barrier for aggressive therapies. That includes treatment like the 91-year-old former president has been getting for cancer. It also includes major heart procedures, joint replacements and even some organ transplants.

Doctors say many of the nation's most senior citizens are getting treatments given to people their grandchildren's age — but with different goals.

For patients in their 90s, that includes maintaining good life quality if not gaining many more years.

Carter announced Dec. 6 that he has no more signs of cancer although he's continuing treatment.