Cachexia Related to Multiple Causes

  • Giovanni Mantovani
  • Clelia Madeddu


Despite the long and widespread interest in this topic, there is not an univocal definition for cachexia [1]. The term derives from the Greek kakòs, which means ‘bad,’ and from hexis, meaning ‘condition.’ The clinical syndrome of cachexia is characterised by anorexia, tissue wasting, loss of body weight accompanied by a decrease in muscle mass and adipose tissue, and poor performance status that often precedes death [2] [5]. Cachexia can occur as part of many chronic or end-stage diseases, such as infections, cancer, AIDS, congestive heart failure, rheumatoid arthritis, tuberculosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, and Crohn’s disease. It may develop also in a proportion of elderly persons without obvious diseases. A literature search using the term ‘cachexia’ yielded more than 1000 articles published over the past 5 years [1].


Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Cystic Fibrosis Acquire Immunodeficiency Syndrome Cancer Cachexia Cachectic Patient 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giovanni Mantovani
  • Clelia Madeddu

There are no affiliations available

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