The Relationship between Nutritional Status and Quality of Life among Breast Cancer Patients in Ethiopia Treated at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital and Saint Paul Millennium Medical College

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Addis Abeba University


Background: Breast Cancer patients often suffer from a substantial loss in weight and energy as a result of changes in appetite and metabolism. The prevalence of malnutrition in breast cancer patients ranges from 30% to 60%. While it is already a proven fact that malnutrition is prevalent among cancer patients, the relationship between nutritional status and quality of life among (QoL) in breast cancer patients had not been adequately explored. Objectives: This study is conducted to determine the association between nutritional status and quality of life of Breast Cancer patients at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital (TASH) and St. Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College (SPMMC), Addis Ababa, 2020. Methods: A cross-sectional study on breast cancer patients treated at Tikur Anbessa specialized hospital (TASH) and St. Paul millennium medical college (SPHMMC) oncology centres outpatient and in-patient departments was done from May to August 2020 . Consecutive sampling was used to select study participants. Nutritional status was assessed using subjective global assessment (SGA) screening tool. Quality of life was assessed using the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire Cancer 30 (EORTC QLQ C30) a quality of life measurement scale for cancer patients. To determine the relationship between quality of life scores and nutritional status multivariable linear regression was used. Results: A total of 411 consecutive breast cancer patients were included. A high prevalence of moderate (30.9%) and severe (25.7%) malnutrition was observed. Regarding the quality of life scores of these patients: The mean of overall quality of life of the study participants was (M=61.33 (SD=20.83)). Among the functional scale domains; the first domain with the highest mean score was cognitive functioning (M=76.85 (SD=26.87)). The lowest mean among functional scales was observed in social functioning (M=55.03 (SD=36.26)). The domain with the highest mean among the symptom scales was fatigue (M=48.98 (SD=29.03)) The lowest mean scores were observed in Nausea and vomiting (M=21.65 (SD=31.60)). Moderate and severe malnutrition were negatively associated with overall quality of life β = −9.21 CI (−14.59, −4.67) and β = −17.81 CI (−16.6, −2.91) respectively. Malnutrition also showed negative associations with all domains of functional status and strong positive associations with symptom scores covered in the EORTC QLQ C-30. Conclusion: This study revealed that the magnitude of malnutrition in the breast cancer population is very large and the compromization of their nutritional status also playes a significant role in decreasing their quality of life. .



Nutritional status ,Quality of life