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Nutrition and Cachexia in Cancer Patients – 2020 Project


Over the last years cancer care has seen a lot of developments regarding multidisciplinary approaches and the term
patient-centered care has been proposed to encompass both supportive and palliative care. There is also a shift from traditional palliative (“end of life”) to early supportive care in cancer patients.
Furthermore, dedicated outpatient supportive care teams have been being developed to focus on prevention and management of anticancer treatment toxicities.

Cachexia and malnutrition are important predictors of anticancer treatment success; thus, cachexia and malnutrition should be detected at cancer diagnosis, treated as early as possible and monitored through the whole patient journeys to improve the patients’ quality of life.
In clinical practice, however, cachexia and malnutrition frequently go unrecognized and untreated with negative impact on cancer patients’ quality of life and outcome.

Project Goal

Raise awareness and build knowledge on the transversal role of cachexia and malnutrition diagnosis and nutrition therapy (incl. parenteral nutrition) as integral part of a multimodal supportive care approach in cancer patients.

Project Target Group

Health care professionals and other decision makers (including budget holders, policy makers) able to drive integration of better malnutrition/cachexia/sarcopenia diagnosis and therapy (including parenteral nutrition) in cancer care pathways.

Project Outcomes

A Task Force on Nutrition and Cachexia in Cancer Patients was held on 22 June 2020 as a virtual videoconference.

The article “SPCC task force raises awareness of malnutrition and cachexia in cancer patients” has been published in the dedicated session of the online magazine Cancerworld.

A position paper (with a call to action) was published in Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology, targeting health care professionals and decision makers.
Read the full article via https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1040842823000537?via%3Dihub


Matti Aapro, Sharing Progress in Cancer Care and Clinique de Genolier, Bellinzona and Genolier, Switzerland


Jann Arends, University of Freiburg, Department of Medicine I, Medical Center, Freiburg, Germany

Maurizio Muscaritoli, Sapienza Università di Roma, Department of Translational and Precision Medicine, Rome, Italy