Main Organiser

Julius Centre University of Malaya

Co-organiser

Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malay

Supported by

University of Malaya

QUICK-AND-EASY MALNUTRITION UNIVERSAL SCREENING TOOL TO DETECT CANCER-RELATED MALNUTRITION AMONG SURGICAL OUTPATIENTS IN UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTRE UTRECHT, THE NETHERLANDS

Author

Loh KW, Vriens MR, Ong TA, Moy FM, Schippers CCG, Wong KC

Institution

University of Malaya

Abstract

Objectives: The Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group study showed that over 50% of patients with cancer present with weight loss at diagnosis. Early nutritional screening of patients helps to improve recognition of malnourished patients and enhance clinical outcomes. The general objective of this study was to examine the prevalence and risk of malnutrition in surgical outpatients.

Methods: A total of 104 surgical outpatients with esophageal, stomach or pancreatic cancer were recruited in our study. The risk of malnutrition was examined using the quick-and-easy Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST). Data on age, height, weight, body mass index, percent weight change over the past 6 months, unintentional weight loss, dietetic referrals, and history of nutritional intervention were collected.

Results: A total of 75% of our participants were at high malnutrition risk with a mean (+SD) of weight loss of 5.18 (+6.23)% , despite a mean BMI of 26.09 (±5.73)kgm-2. Participants with significantly higher percent weight change, involuntary weight loss, dietician referral and nutritional intervention had higher risk of malnutrition (p<0.05). Multiple Logistic Regression was used to control for all confounders significantly associated with malnutrition risks. Presence of involuntary weight loss is the only significant predictor associated with risk of malnutrition; adjusted OR of 3.22 (95% CI: 1.23-8.40).

Conclusion: The high prevalence of malnutrition and associated poorer clinical outcome in our study highlights the importance of routine screening of malnutrition in oncology patients. Surgical personnel must be aware that involuntary weight change is an important predictor of malnutrition risks even if the patient’s BMI is not suggestive of malnutrition.