International Nutrition Audit in FORegut TuMors
International Audit of Nutrition Care in Patients With FORegut TuMors
The purpose of this study is to evaluate the current state of nutrition care and patient
related outcomes in patients with head, neck and esophageal cancers in North America, Europe
The proposed project is a prospective inception cohort study of current nutrition practices
of patients with foregut tumors (esophageal and/or head & neck cancer) in cancer care
settings in Canada, Europe and Australia. This multi center study will involve a baseline
audit of current nutrition practice, followed by repeated audit cycles for up to 6 months
from the first time the patient is introduced to the Cancer Care System. Approximately 5-7
Cancer Care settings from Europe, Australia and North America will participate in this
All consecutive consenting patients will be enrolled in the study. As an audit, a formal
sample size calculation is not possible, however, we estimate that each of the 5-7 sites
will be able to enroll 20 patients over 1 year, with a 6 month follow up, resulting in an
estimated sample size of 140-200. All the nutrition care characteristics, patient level
descriptors and patient related outcomes will be described using mean and standard deviation
or median and inter quantile range based on distributional properties for continuous
variables by different locations and cancer care settings. Count with percentages will be
used for categorical variables. The effect of route of nutrition, timing of initiation of
nutrition intervention, adequacy of nutrition, Patient Generated Subjective Global
Assessment (PGSGA) scores and scores of weight, food intake, symptoms and activities &
function on survival of the patients will be assessed by univariate and multi-variable Cox
The association of categorical factors such as route of nutrition, timing of initiation of
nutrition intervention and so on with the categorical outcomes—complications related to
cancer treatment, unplanned readmission and treatment toxicity—will be assessed by
chi-square or Fisher exact test, as appropriate. The continuous variables such as PGSGA and
other scores will be compared between different categories of the outcomes by t-test or
ANOVA as appropriate. Appropriate non-parametric test will be conducted if distributional
properties invalidate the use of t-test or ANOVA. The association of continuous variables
with continuous outcomes will be assessed by Pearson or Spearman correlation. If necessary,
multivariable analyses will be conducted using multiple regression analysis for continuous
outcomes and logistic regression for binary outcomes.
Data will be stored in REDCap system housed in a physically and electronically secure data
centre at the University of Alberta and is behind the Faculty of Medicine's firewall. REDCap
is a secure, web-based application designed exclusively to support data capture for research
studies. REDCap provides: 1) an intuitive interface for data entry (with data validation);
2) 128 bit encryption between the data entry client and the server; 3) audit trails for
tracking data manipulation and export procedures; 4) automated export procedures for
seamless data downloads to common statistical packages (SPSS, Statistical Analysis Software
[SAS], Stata, R); 5) procedures for importing data from external sources; and 6) advanced
features, such as branching logic, calculated fields and data quality checks.
After this pilot study is completed, we hope to enhance the nutrition evidence in this area
by expanding this work to create a prospective registry of nutrition practices and outcomes
in patients with foregut tumors.
Head and Neck Cancer, Esophageal Cancer
nutrition, foregut tumors, patient related outcomes, audit
University of Alberta
University of Alberta, Fresenius Kabi, Nutricia Advanced, Baxter Healthcare Corporation
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Australia, Canada, Italy, Netherlands