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Baseline Dysgeusia in Chemotherapy-Naïve Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients: Association with Nutrition and Quality of Life

Turcott, Jenny Georgina, Juárez-Hernández, Eva, Sánchez-Lara, Karla, Flores-Estrada, Diana, Zatarain-Barrón, Zyanya Lucia, Arrieta, Oscar
Nutrition and cancer 2020 v.72 no.2 pp. 194-201
anorexia, drug therapy, energy, food intake, gastrointestinal system, lean body mass, lung neoplasms, nausea, patients, quality of life, questionnaires, satiety, taste, taste disorders
Purpose: Dysgeusia can be found in 50% of cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Nonetheless, dysgeusia can be present in treatment-naïve patients, and may negatively impact nutrition and quality of life. Methods: Treatment-naïve non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) was assessed for dysgeusia using a self-reporting questionnaire and a rinse stimuli technique. Patients were evaluated in terms of health-related quality of life (HRQL) using the EORTC-QLQ-C30 questionnaire and in terms of nutrition using the subjective global assessment (SGA), energy consumption and body composition. Results: Among 65 treatment-naïve patients, dysgeusia was self-reported in 35%. Using the rinse stimuli technique, most of the patients perceived taste stimuli with a minimal concentration, but could not recognize the taste. Patients with dysgeusia presented significantly less lean-body mass (P = 0.027), and higher fat mass (P = 0.027). Additionally, these patients had significantly more gastrointestinal symptoms including nausea (P = 0.042), anorexia (P = 0.004), and early satiety (P < 0.0001). Dysgeusia was also associated with less food consumption (P = 0.010). Last, patients with dysgeusia had clinically-significant alterations in HRQL scales. Conclusion: Presence of dysgeusia in NSCLC patients before undergoing chemotherapy is associated with worse nutritional outcomes. The routine assessment of dysgeusia in treatment-naïve patients should be encouraged to timely assess and follow nutritional parameters.