Parenteral nutrition support for patients with pancreatic cancer–improvement of the nutritional status and the therapeutic outcome
ABSTRACT Malnutrition is a frequent and serious problem of patients with pancreatic cancer (i.e. due to exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, postoperative syndromes, anorexia, chemotherapy, and/or tumor progression). In many cases it has negative effects on the quality of life or on the tumor therapy. We investigated if malnutrition can be resolved or corrected by adequate home parenteral nutrition (PN) of pancreatic cancer (PaCa) patients, in cases where dietary advice and oral nutrition supplementation failed to correct the deficiencies. The energy supply via PN was analyzed in patients with PaCa, with focus on the single components in compounded PN.
We examined a group of six women and eleven men with assured PaCa disease at different tumor stages (mean age: 64 years). Indications for PN were a reduction of body weight of >5 % in three months and/or a long-term reduced nutritional status, reduced results of the bio-electrical impedance analysis (BIA), malassimilation and/or clinical symptoms like severe diarrhoea/vomitus, preventing adequate oral nutrition for weeks. The PN, administered via port-catheter, was initiated while the patients were undergoing chemotherapy. The course of treatment was assessed based on body weight, BIA (Data-Input Nutriguard-M), on laboratory parameters and on personal evaluation of the patients' quality of life. Retrospectively, the patients were subdivided into two groups (Gr): Gr1 (n=10) had a survival period of more than 5, up to more than 37 months, after the start of PN and Gr2 (n=7) had a survival between 1-4 months after start of PN. The calculations of the energy supply were based on the patients' body weight (per kg). Fluid volume, relation of macronutrients and addition of fish oil to PN are described in detail.
Gr1: Eight of ten patients already showed an increase of body weight with the initial PN, two patients after dose adaption. This positive impact was also observable on the cellular level by means of BIA results (phase angle, body cell mass (BCM), extracellular mass (ECM), cell content and ECM/BCM Index). Two patients, who were receiving PN for over two or three periods, showed reproducibility of the results; while when PN was interrupted all BIA parameters degraded and they ameliorated with the restart of PN. Gr2: In these patients PN was started in the late stage of the tumor disease in order to allow for a--from the retrospective point of view--last, but ineffective chemotherapy. The data indicated that the weight loss could be retarded, even if the effects on body weight and BIA parameters were found to be less pronounced compared to Gr1. The mean energy supply of both groups, however, was similar: 8,823 kcal (Gr1) per week compared to 9,572 kcal (Gr2) per week. The majority of patients claimed to be quicker and more powerful under PN and to some extent the appetite was enhanced.
A timely onset of PN with sufficient calories leads to an improved nutritional status of patients with PaCa disease. PN enhances the quality of life, the administration of tumor therapy without interruption and therefore may lead to a better success of the entire therapy. For late-stage tumor patients (Gr2) the quality of life can, at least, be improved. The success of PN is significantly dependent upon the patients' compliance, which could be achieved through intensive consulting and support of all patients and their relatives.
- Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology 09/2012; 9(10). DOI:10.1038/nrclinonc.2012.99-c1 · 15.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In cancer of the pancreatic head region, exocrine insufficiency is a well-known complication, leading to steatorrhea, weight loss, and malnutrition. Its presence is frequently overlooked, however, because the primary attention is focused on cancer treatment. To date, the risk of developing exocrine insufficiency is unspecified. Therefore, we assessed this function in patients with tumors of the pancreatic head, distal common bile duct, or ampulla of Vater. Between March 2010 and August 2012, we prospectively included patients diagnosed with cancer of the pancreatic head region at our tertiary center. To preclude the effect of a resection, we excluded operated patients. Each month, the exocrine function was determined with a fecal elastase test. Furthermore, endocrine function, steatorrhea-related symptoms, and body weight were evaluated. Patients were followed for 6 months, or until death. Thirty-two patients were included. The tumor was located in the pancreas in 75%, in the bile duct in 16%, and in the ampullary region in 9%, with a median size of 2.5 cm. At diagnosis, the prevalence of exocrine insufficiency was 66%, which increased to 92% after a median follow-up of 2 months (interquartile range, 1 to 4 mo). Most patients with cancer of the pancreatic head region were already exocrine insufficient at diagnosis, and within several months, this function was impaired in almost all cases. Given this high prevalence, physicians should be focused on diagnosing and treating exocrine insufficiency, to optimize the nutritional status and physical condition, especially for those patients undergoing palliative chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy.Journal of clinical gastroenterology 01/2013; 48(5):e43-6. DOI:10.1097/MCG.0b013e31829f56e7 · 3.19 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This review focuses on the nutritional support of the non-surgical cancer patient. The following topics are reviewed: cancer cachexia (definition and staging, prevalence and impact on clinical outcome); nutritional screening to identify potential candidates for nutritional support; nutritional requirements in terms of macro-and micro-nutrients of the advanced cancer patient. Finally, the indications and results of nutritional support are presented with a special focus on the following issues: routes of delivering nutritional support, the use of standard or n-3 fatty acids-enriched oral nutritional supplements during radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy, tube feeding during RT (with/without chemotherapy), parenteral nutrition during chemotherapy, nutritional support during hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, (home) enteral or total and supplemental parenteral nutrition in the incurable patient. Lastly, the bioethical aspects of feeding patients with incurable disease are briefly reviewed.Critical reviews in oncology/hematology 06/2013; 87(2). DOI:10.1016/j.critrevonc.2013.03.006 · 4.05 Impact Factor