Nutritional care of cancer patients: a survey on patients’ needs and medical care in reality.
Sommaire de l'article
Cancer patients represent a patient group with a wide-range of nutrition related problems which are often under-recognized and undertreated. In order to assess the status quo of nutritional care in Germany, we conducted a survey among patients with different types of cancer.
A standardized questionnaire was distributed online by two national umbrella organizations for self-help groups.
1335 participants completed the questionnaire. 69 % of the participants reported having received information on nutrition and/or specific nutrition-related symptoms. Most often this information was derived from print media (68.5 %) or from within self-help groups (58.7 %). 57.0 % of participants reported having had questions concerning nutrition and/or problems with food intake. most frequently named topics of interest were "healthy diet" (35.0 %) weakness/fatigue (24.3 %), dietary supplements (21.3 %) and taste changes (19.8 %). Nutrition information was most often provided by dietitians (38.7 %) followed by physicians (9.8 %). Women reported receiving nutrition counseling in the hospital nearly twice as often as men (12.5 % versus 5.7 %; p < 0.001). A quarter of the patients (24.1 %) reported using dietary supplements and patients who had received some sort of nutrition information more often reported using supplements (p < 0.001).
Nutrition is an essential element in cancer care and patients report a high interest and need: Yet, many patients do not have access to high quality nutrition therapy during and after cancer therapy.
IMPLICATIONS FOR CANCER SURVIVORS:
With respect to survival and quality of life, increasing the availability and resources for provision of evidence based nutrition information seems mandatory.