Navigation Links
Researchers at St. Michael's Hospital test tool for screening cancer patients for malnutrition
Date:2/15/2013

TORONTO, Feb. 15, 2013Considering the many things a cancer patient has to think about, it's easy to understand why maintaining proper nutrition may not be top of mind.

This can be true, too, at busy outpatient settings where it's often difficult to find the time and resources to test cancer patients for malnutrition.

However, researchers at St. Michael's Hospital have found a shorter version of a commonly used nutrition-assessment tool does the job effectively and can potentially improve outcomes for cancer patients.

"The full-length test for malnutrition is too cumbersome for a busy clinic," said Pauline Darling, the senior author of the study, and a dietitian and researcher at the hospital. "We need a tool that is quick, easy to apply and accurate. Otherwise, testing for patients' nutrition falls through the cracks."

The scored Patient-Generated Subjective Global Assessment tool (PG-SGA) is the recommended test used to identify malnutrition in cancer patients. Patients answer questions about their weight, dietary intake, symptoms that may affect intake and their activity level and then a trained personnel performs a physical assessment. The PG-SGA is often not used in an outpatient setting because of the time and resources it takes to complete.

Darling and colleagues looked at whether an abridged version of this tool which forgoes the physical examination and has fewer questions could be just as effective but easier to complete.

The short version, called the abPG-SGA, is used by some institutions but until now there has been no data on how well it captures malnourished patients.

The study, which appeared online in Nutrition and Cancer today, looked at 90 patients receiving chemotherapy from the outpatient oncology clinic at St. Michael's Hospital between January and June 2008. The results found the abPG-SGA was the best tool in terms of identifying patients who needed further nutrition assessment by a registered dietitian. It was also the best tool for minimizing the number of patients referred to a dietitian but who turn out not to need their services.

In looking at the effectiveness of the tool, researchers found 36 per cent of the patients they looked at were malnourished.

"This is a large number of people and it speaks to the importance of using a reliable approach to correctly identify the patients that are top priority from a nutrition standpoint," said Darling, also a scientist at the hospital's Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute. "Having malnutrition is associated with a higher risk of mortality and the chemotherapy is less effective in patients who are malnourished."

Malnutrition is commonly seen in cancer patients because the cancer itself may cause increased metabolic demands, often caused by tumors, reduces appetite and side effects from the cancer treatment can reduce food intake.

Darling said it's important to catch the patients before their nutritional status worsens because after a certain point, severe malnutrition is difficult to reverse.

"We need a tool in place that's easy, quick and effective because otherwise it's difficult to identify which patients need the most help," Darling said. "People often equate malnutrition with a low BMI, but usually the patients' weight is at or above normal range and is no indication of whether they're malnourished. We are more interested in knowing about weight loss sustained over a short period of time and whether the patient is eating enough nourishing food."


'/>"/>

Contact: Kate Taylor
TaylorKa@smh.ca
647-393-7527
St. Michael's Hospital
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. NIH awards $20 million over 5 years to train next generation of global health researchers
2. Researchers develop a new cell and animal model of inflammatory breast cancer
3. Researchers uncover a viable way for colorectal cancer patients to overcome drug resistance
4. Researchers Find Gene Mutations That May Be a Key to Autism
5. Researchers find evidence of banned antibiotics in poultry products
6. NJ stroke researchers report advances in spatial neglect research at AAN Conference
7. Autism by the numbers: Yale researchers examine impact of new diagnostic criteria
8. Researchers Map Brain Regions Linked to Intelligence
9. Researchers ID Genes That May Determine Mental Illness
10. Researchers Develop Blood Test for Depression
11. University of Cincinnati researchers win $3.7M grant from US Department of Defense
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... While EHR ... Medical has introduced an innovative workstation designed to reduce nursing fatigue while enhancing ... Mobile EHR Workstation offers a lightweight, highly mobile, multi-functional alternative to the limitations ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... (ISTS) brings its educational assistance management solution to the exhibit floor for the ... in Orlando, Fla. , From Feb. 19–23, 2017, more than 40,000 healthcare ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... , ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... to Prevent a Warning Letter, **An FDAnews Webinar**, Feb. 23, 2017 — 1:30 ... manufacturers distinguish between corrective action (CA) and preventive action (PA)? , The methods ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... Program will serve more than ... the U.S. Soccer Foundation announced today that they have awarded nine grants to ... the Foundation’s soccer mentoring program, teaches kids the fundamentals of soccer while striving ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... Officer, George Rogers, was named to Staffing Industry Analysts' 2017 "Staffing 100 North ... those who have made notable contributions to the staffing industry over the last ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/17/2017)... Feb. 17, 2017  BioDigital, Inc., creators of ... of their 3D body mapping technology with eClinicalWorks, ... new integration will be used to capture and ... of the human body. BioDigital pilots show using ... while also increasing the precision of clinical annotations ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... Feb. 16, 2017 Research and Markets ... Emerging Medical Device Technologies" report to their offering. ... Traditional ... procedures, general instruments, non-drug coated implantables, large endoscopes, needle based ... use over the last two to three decades for the ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... MISSISSAUGA, Ontario , Feb. 16, 2017  Aralez ... a global specialty pharmaceutical company, today announced that executive ... Healthcare Conference to be held February 22-23, 2017. ... overview of the Company at 1:35 p.m. local time ... webcast and audio archive for the event may be ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: