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The prevalence of deranged C-reactive protein and albumin in patients with incurable cancer approaching death
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Radiation Sciences, Oncology. Östersunds sjukhus.
2018 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 13, no 3, article id e0193693Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction Amongst patients with incurable cancer approaching death, cachexia is common and associated with adverse outcomes. The term cachexia lacks a universally accepted definition and there is no consensus regarding which variables are to be measured. Furthermore, an elevated C-reactive protein is a common clinical challenge in this patient group. This study aims to add to the ongoing discussion regarding the definition of cancer cachexia and to study the role of C-reactive protein and s-albumin in this context.

Material and methods A 1-year cohort, consisting of 155 cancer patients enrolled in a specialized palliative home care team in the city of Ostersund, Sweden, that were deceased during the year of 2015 was studied. Laboratory measures were studied within 0-30 and 31-60 days prior to death. C-reactive protein >10 mg/L and coinciding s-albumin <30 g/L was referred to as "laboratory cachexia". Also, the number of days from the first found "laboratory cachexia" until death was noted.

Results The prevalence of "laboratory cachexia" was 85% 0-30 days prior to death compared to 66% 31-60 days prior to death (p<0.01). The majority of patients (75%) had an onset of "laboratory cachexia" within 0-120 days prior to death, with a median of 47 days. The median values for C-reactive protein and s-albumin within 0-30 days prior to death were 84mg/L and 23g/L respectively.

Discussion Could markedly deranged values of C-reactive protein and s-albumin, such as found in this study, signal a relatively short remaining survival time in patients with incurable cancer and no clinical signs of ongoing infection? The role of "laboratory cachexia" in this context as well as the cut off values for the laboratory measures included may be further discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 13, no 3, article id e0193693
National Category
Cancer and Oncology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-146442DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0193693ISI: 000427253500008PubMedID: 29534089OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-146442DiVA, id: diva2:1203821
Available from: 2018-05-04 Created: 2018-05-04 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved

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Axelsson, Bertil

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