ASPEN 2009 scientific session featured two new research papers on therapies for lung cancer.
Both papers used a protein-calorie-dense nutrition
product fortified with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) – an
oral supplement created for sufferers of cachexia lung cancer (ProSure).
Barbara van der Meij, MSc (The Netherlands), and
colleagues conducted a 5-week, placebo-controlled study
in people undergoing chemoradiotherapy.
The study compared outcomes for use of the cancer-
specific nutrition supplement (two servings per day) with
those for an isocaloric control drink. People who imbibed
the drink had improved weight maintenance, better global health status and increased physical activity.
Increased physical activity equated to an additional 20 minutes of walking each day, a major boost for self-care and social interactions.
Joan Trabal, MS RD (Spain), and co-workers ran a pilot
study of patients receiving chemotherapy for advanced
The patients underwent calorie, protein and EPA-enriched nutrition supplement with dietary counseling alone for three months and were followed for six months.
The enriched-supplement group gained significantly more weight compared with control, while some areas of quality of life assessments were also improved. Over three months, none of the patients in the enriched-supplement group interrupted chemotherapy due to toxicity, compared with 67% of patients in the control group.