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UICC World Cancer Congress 2006
Bridging the Gap: Transforming Knowledge into Action
July 8-12, 2006, Washington, DC, USA
Methods:1000 cancer patients admitted to the Palliative Medicine Program were assessed for symptom prevalence and severity using a 38 symptom instrument. CUP was excluded and other primaries were categorized into 12 cancer groups including two combined groups, hematological and gynecological. The prevalence of each symptom and the prevalence of moderate/severe symptoms were compared among 12 primary sites using Chi-square test; pairwise comparisons among primary sites were performed when the overall test was significant (p<0.05).
Results:Thirty-eight symptoms in 796 cancer patients were assessed. 56% were males, the median age was 65. Most patients had ECOG performance status of 3 (41%) or 2 (27%). Twelve symptoms differed among primary sites in terms of both prevalence and moderate/severe occurrence: bloating, cough, dyspepsia, dysphagia, dyspnea, edema, early satiety, itching, nausea, sedation, vomiting, weight loss Pain, fatigue, weakness, lack of energy, anorexia were not different among primary sites but were the most prevalent symptoms among all cancers. Prevalent symptoms are distributed to all cancers. Other symptoms vary across primary site. Research to correlate symptoms to primary site would facilitate symptom assessment. Primary sites are a predictor of cancer symptom prevalence and severity.
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