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Cancer: Influence of Nutrition on Quality of Life

  • M. M. Marín Caro
  • C. Pichard
Reference work entry

Abstract:

Cancer and its treatment result in a deterioration of patient’s physical, psychological and social well-being. It has a direct impact on the metabolism resulting in an impaired use of the nutrients provided by the food intake.  Malnutrition is typically found in oncology patients and results in a reduced response to the oncology treatment, increased morbidity and a decrease of quality of life (QoL). QoL is a concept for the evaluation of the patients’ well being in all aspects of their life. Hence QoL can be used to assess the impact of the cancer treatment in terms of what matters to patients.

This chapter aims to show how nutritional treatment can improve the QoL. In order to promote this objective, nutritional care should be part of the oncology care. The optimal nutritional care is based on the balance between the patient’s nutritional requirements and food intake. Nutritional care can be provided by different means: nutritional counseling, oral nutritional supplementation, enteral nutrition and parenteral nutrition. The focus of the nutritional care differs if the patient’s undergo curative or palliative oncology treatment. In curative treatment, the nutritional intervention aims for an increased tolerance of and response to the treatment, increased immune function, decreased rate of complications and hence a decreased length of hospital stay. In palliative treatment, nutritional intervention is focused on the “management” of symptoms, delaying the loss of autonomy and improving their QoL. The evaluation of the QoL gives the possibility to integrate the patient’s needs and expectations to the oncology care.

Keywords

Nutritional Status Enteral Nutrition Total Parenteral Nutrition Nutritional Intervention Early Satiety 
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.

List of Abbreviations:

BIA

Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis

BMI

 Body Mass Index

BW

Body Weight

EN

Enteral Nutrition

HPN

Home Parenteral Nutrition

ONS

Oral Nutritional Supplements

PEG

Percutaneus Endoscopic Gastrostomy

QoL

Quality of life

REE

Resting Energy Expenditure

SGA

Subjective Global Assessment

TPN

Total Parenteral Nutrition

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© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. M. Marín Caro
  • C. Pichard

There are no affiliations available

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