Utility of a perioperative nutritional intervention on postoperative outcomes in high-risk head & neck cancer patients

Nicholas R. Rowan, Jonas T. Johnson, Christina E. Fratangelo, Brenda K. Smith, Patricia A. Kemerer, Robert L. Ferris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives Investigate both the utility and feasibility of perioperative nutritional supplementation with an arginine-enriched immunonutrition formula to high-risk head and neck cancer surgical patients and examine its effects on acute post-operative clinical outcomes. Materials & Methods This prospective, non-randomized, interventional cohort study compared high-risk head and neck cancer surgical patients who consumed a pre- and post-operative arginine-based nutritional supplement to those that did not. Outcome measures included post-operative complications, length of hospitalization, readmission rates and measurement of nutritional biomarkers. Results 195 high-risk head and neck cancer surgical patients were enrolled. 59% of the patients used the nutritional supplement, 41% did not. Of the 80 patients who did not receive the immunonutrition formula, 38 (47.5%) experienced post-operative complications of all types as compared to 29 of the 115 (25.2%) patients who did consume the product (p = 0.0021). Pharyngeal leaks or fistulas were the most common post-operative complications in both groups and more common in patients who did not receive supplementation (p = 0.007). Length of stay was on average 2.8 days longer in patients who did not have enhanced nutrition (p = 0.02), while readmission rates between the two groups were similar (p = 0.91). Measurements of nutritional biomarkers were not reported secondary to low collection rates. Conclusion Enhanced perioperative nutrition may result in significant reductions of post-operative fistula formations and decreased length of stay in a high-risk head and neck cancer population, even in the setting of poor compliance. The potential quality improvement in both patient care and healthcare cost is both real and significant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)42-46
Number of pages5
JournalOral Oncology
Volume54
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Arginine
  • Fistula
  • Head and neck cancer
  • Healthcare costs
  • Laryngeal cancer
  • Length of stay
  • Nutritional status
  • Oral cancer
  • Oropharyngeal cancer
  • Quality improvement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Utility of a perioperative nutritional intervention on postoperative outcomes in high-risk head & neck cancer patients'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this