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Home > Mediaroom > Press Releases > 2010 > Malnutrition Common Among Cancer Patients, But Screening Not Routine

Lori Gardner, Senior Director
Communications & Marketing
301.984.9496 ext. 226

ACCC News Release

For Immediate Release: March 10, 2010

Malnutrition Common Among Cancer Patients, But Screening Not Routine

ROCKVILLE, Md.—Although malnutrition is common among cancer patients at some point in their treatment, malnutrition screening is not applied to all patients routinely throughout treatment.

A special presentation at the Association of Community Cancer Centers' (ACCC's) 36th Annual National Meeting on March 19, 2010, in Baltimore, Md., will explore the issue of oncology nutrition intervention and assess how well cancer centers are screening their cancer patients for malnutrition.

"Twenty to 80 percent of cancer patients develop malnutrition," said presenter Rhone Levin, MEd, RD, LD, CSO. "Malnutrition is a prognostic indicator for weight loss, treatment breaks, side effects, and recurrence of disease."

Ms. Levin will explore how to best create a "culture of nutrition" in cancer programs, where medical nutrition therapy is applied at the right time in patient care, where registered dietitians are most effectively used, and where nutrition assessment and intervention are optimally applied. She is an oncology dietitian at Mountain States Tumor Institute/St. Lukes Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho.

"Use of a standardized nutrition screening process applied routinely to oncology patients is essential for a well-rounded oncology nutrition program," said Levin.

Good nutrition can decrease rates of infection, speed healing and shorten hospitalizations, increase tolerance to treatment and response to treatment, and decrease complications.

About the Association of Community Cancer Centers
The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) is the leading advocacy and education organization for the multidisciplinary cancer care team. More than 23,000 cancer care professionals from over 2,000 hospitals and practices nationwide are affiliated with ACCC. It is estimated that 65 percent of the nation's cancer patients are treated by a member of ACCC. Providing a national forum for addressing issues that affect community cancer programs, ACCC is recognized as the premier provider of resources for the entire oncology care team. Our members include medical and radiation oncologists, surgeons, cancer program administrators and medical directors, senior hospital executives, practice managers, pharmacists, oncology nurses, radiation therapists, social workers, and cancer program data managers. For more information, visit ACCC's website at Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and read our blog, ACCCBuzz.

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