Impact on the Nutritional Status and Inflammation of Patients with Cancer Hospitalized after the SARS-CoV-2 Lockdown
Patricia Yárnoz-Esquíroz 1 2 , Ana Chopitea 3 , Laura Olazarán 1 2 , Maite Aguas-Ayesa 1 4 , Camilo Silva 1 4 , Anna Vilalta-Lacarra 3 , Javier Escalada 1 4 , Ignacio Gil-Bazo 2 3 5 6 , Gema Frühbeck 1 2 4 7 , Javier Gómez-Ambrosi 2 4 7
Many studies have demonstrated that malnutrition has a negative impact on quality of life and mortality in patients with cancer. During the SARS-CoV-2 lockdown, dietary intake changes were detected in the Spanish population, reflecting an increase in the consumption of fruit, bread, flours, and eggs.
The present study analyzed the nutritional status of 728 patients with cancer admitted once the SARS-CoV-2 lockdown finished, comparing it with the previous year as well as with mortality rates.
The Malnutrition Universal Screening Tool (MUST) was applied in the first 24 h after admission. Age, gender, days of stay, circulating concentrations of albumin, cholesterol, C-reactive protein (CRP), lymphocytes, prealbumin, and mortality data were analyzed.
Patients with cancer admitted between June and December of 2020 exhibited no statistical differences in BMI, age, or gender as compared to patients admitted in 2019. Statistically significant differences in nutritional status (p < 0.05), albumin (p < 0.001), and CRP (p = 0.005) levels regarding lockdown were observed in relation with a small non-significant reduction in mortality.
In conclusion, following the SARS-CoV-2 lockdown, an improved nutritional status in cancer patients at admission was observed with a decrease in the percentage of weight loss and CRP levels together with an increase in albumin levels compared to oncological patients admitted the previous year.