Support Care Cancer. 2023 Oct 17;31(12):638. doi: 10.1007/s00520-023-08104-8.
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) patients usually presented malnutrition under chemoradiotherapy (CRT)/radiotherapy (RT). Few studies stratified by age to investigate the association of nutritional status with overall survival (OS) in NPC patients. This study aimed to explore the nutritional parameters related prognosis of NPC patients in different age. The total 1365 NPC patients were classified into young (18~45), middle-aged (46~60), and old groups (> 60). PG-SGA scores, NRS-2002 scores, Karnofsky performance status scores, anthropometric, and blood indicators (albumin, prealbumin, transferrin, C-reactive protein, hemoglobin, and total lymphocyte) were assessed. Cox regression analysis was performed to evaluate the association between risk factors of nutritional status and the overall survival in different age group of NPC patients. Kaplan-Meier (KM) survival analysis was used to estimate the effect of nutritional indexes on prognosis. The abnormal rate of albumin, prealbumin, hemoglobin, hand grip strength, and calf circumference increased with age. The malnutrition occurred in all age group and low calf circumference (HR, 4.427, 1.167-16.791) was an independent death risk in young adults. Distant metastasis (HR, 4.754, 2.737-8.260), low albumin (HR, 3.530, 1.708-7.296), hand grip strength (HR, 1.901, 1.160-3.115), and the nutritional intervention requirement (NRS-2002 ≥ 3) (HR, 2.802, 1.211-6.483) was significantly correlated with poor OS in NPC patients with middled age adults. Distant metastasis (HR, 2.546, 1.497-4.330), low albumin (HR, 1.824, 0.949-3.507), low hemoglobin (HR, 1.757, 1.015-3.044), low hand grip strength (HR, 1.771, 1.112-2.818), and low calf circumference (HR, 1.951, 1.074-3.545) were associated with increased risk of death in the elderly. KM analysis indicated that over 60 years, distant metastasis, low albumin, low hand grip strength, low calf circumference, and malnutritional risk (NRS-2002 ≥ 3) were correlated to prognosis of NPC patients. Low calf circumference could be a prognosis not only in elderly but also in young adults of NPC patients, whereas low albumin and distant metastasis were the prognostic factors in middle-aged and elderly patients. Patients aged over 60 years exhibited poorer OS compared with young and middle-aged adults.