Ana Tečić Vuger, Iva Nikles, Nikolina Lonjak, Marija Miletić, Josip Kuharić, Zdravka Rakuljić, Ana Koši Kunac, Irena Tomljanović, Sara Šošić-Horvat, Dina Muratović, Ana Marčić, Ljubica Radmilović Varga, Sanja Maloševac, Josipa Ivezić, Mirjana Pavlović, Žarko Bajić, Robert Šepa-rović, Damir Vrbanec
Objective of the Study: To determine the point prevalence of significant nutritional risk among cancer patients in Croatia.
Subjects and Methods: This cross-sectional study was nested in the prospective cohort study of the Section of Young Oncologists of the Croatian Society for Medical Oncology, Croatian Medical Association, conducted in Croatia during 2017 on the consecutive sample of cancer patients selected by the order of their arrival to the exam.Nutritional screening was performed using the NRS-2002, According to NRS-2002, the patient is considered to be at significant nutritional risk if the result is ≥3.
Results: We included 275 patients treated at eleven cancer centers in Croatia. In 60 patients (21.8%, 95% CI 17.1% -27.2%) we identified the significant nutritional risk (NRS-2002 ≥3) what indicates the need for the nutritional intervention. Any change during 30 days prior to screening, such as loss of body weight or reduced intake of food, was expressed by 127 (46.2%) participants.
Conclusion: Our study has confirmed that a significant number of cancer patients in Croatia are in some degree at nutritional risk, and that more than one quarter need nutritional intervention. Nutritional screening is the first step in the long-term control of complications associated with altered food intake and nutritional risk, as well as in improving the overall quality of life of cancer patients and the prognosis of disease outcomes, so regarding the presented results, it should be routinely implemented.