Malnutrition and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting: implications for practice

Davidson, Wendy, Teleni, Laisa, Muller, Jacqueline, Ferguson, Maree, McCarthy, Alexandra, Vick, Jo and Isenring, Elisabeth (2012) Malnutrition and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting: implications for practice. Oncology Nursing Forum, 39 4: E340-E345. doi:10.1188/12.ONF.E340-E345

Author Davidson, Wendy
Teleni, Laisa
Muller, Jacqueline
Ferguson, Maree
McCarthy, Alexandra
Vick, Jo
Isenring, Elisabeth
Title Malnutrition and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting: implications for practice
Journal name Oncology Nursing Forum   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0190-535X
Publication date 2012-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1188/12.ONF.E340-E345
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 39
Issue 4
Start page E340
End page E345
Total pages 5
Place of publication Pittsburgh, PA, United States
Publisher Oncology Nursing Society
Formatted abstract
Purpose/Objectives: To determine the prevalence of malnutrition and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) limiting patients' dietary intake in a chemotherapy unit.

Design: Cross-sectional descriptive audit. Setting: Chemotherapy ambulatory care unit in a teaching hospital in Australia. Sample: 121 patients receiving chemotherapy for malignancies, aged 18 years and older, and able to provide verbal consent.

Methods: An accredited practicing dietitian collected all data. Chi-square tests were used to determine the relationship of malnutrition with variables and demographic data.

Main Research Variables: Nutritional status, weight change, body mass index, prior dietetic input, CINV, and CINV that limited dietary intake.

Findings: Thirty-one participants (26%) were malnourished, 12 (10%) had intake-limiting CINV, 22 (20%) reported significant weight loss, and 20 (18%) required improved nutrition symptom management. High nutrition risk diagnoses, CINV, body mass index, and weight loss were significantly associated with malnutrition. Thirteen participants (35%) with malnutrition, significant weight loss, intake-limiting CINV, and/or who critically required improved symptom management reported no prior dietetic contact; the majority of those participants were overweight or obese.

Conclusions: Of patients receiving chemotherapy in this ambulatory setting, 26% were malnourished, as were the majority of patients reporting intake-limiting CINV. Implications for Nursing: Patients with malnutrition and/or intake-limiting CINV and in need of improved nutrition symptom management may be overlooked, particularly patients who are overweight or obese - an increasing proportion of the Australian population. Evidence-based practice guidelines recommend implementing validated nutrition screening tools, such as the Malnutrition Screening Tool, in patients undergoing chemotherapy to identify those at risk of malnutrition who require dietitian referral.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences -- Publications
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