Background: Single-agent chemotherapy is considered a good and safe treatment option for elderly patients with advanced gastric cancer (AGC). We investigated the efficacy and safety of trastuzumab plus low-dose capecitabine in elderly patients with previously untreated human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive AGC. Methods: Patients aged 75 years or older with tumors having HER2 overexpression defined as either immunohistochemistry (IHC) 3+ or IHC 2+ and in situ hybridization-positive were eligible for inclusion. Patients received capecitabine (1000 mg/m2) orally twice daily on days 1-14 and trastuzumab (8 mg/kg for cycle 1, followed by 6 mg/kg) intravenously on day 1 of a 21-day cycle. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS). Results: Twenty patients were enrolled. The median age was 79 years (range 75-91). Nine patients (45 %) had ECOG performance status 2. Median PFS was 5.2 months (95 % CI 1.9-8.4 months), and median overall survival was 9.3 months (95 % CI 4.0-14.6 months). The confirmed response rate was 40 % (95 % CI 19-64 %) with disease control rate of 80 %. Grade 3-4 toxicities were anorexia (10 %), fatigue (5 %), stomatitis (5 %), and anemia (5 %). No treatment-related deaths or symptomatic congestive heart failure were observed. Conclusions: Low-dose capecitabine plus trastuzumab is effective and well tolerated in elderly patients with HER2-positive AGC.
- Gastric cancer