Common sense tells us that when we’re sick, we need to keep our strength up through good nutrition, and that is especially true for people with malignant mesothelioma. Yet there has never been a definitive scientific study that have specifically looked at whether a patient’s nutritional profile can tell physicians anything about how well a patient is likely to hold up in the face of aggressive cancer treatments. But now a group of researchers from the Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan have taken an already-existing nutritional index and tested its predictive powers on patients diagnosed with the rare asbestos-related disease, finding it is an extremely effective way of anticipating patient outcomes.
The nutritional index that the researchers used is called the CONUT, or Controlling Nutritional Status index. Original created by Spanish researchers in 2005, the CONUT measures serum albumin concentration, total peripheral lymphocyte count and total cholesterol concentration. It has been highly regarded for its simplicity and cost effectiveness as well as its ability to predict how patients diagnosed with colon and other cancers will fare throughout their treatment protocol, but it was never previously used on malignant mesothelioma patients. The team of scientists believe that it will prove to be a very valuable tool. Writing of their findings, lead researcher Shinkici Takamore wrote, “The CONUT score was an independent predictor of a poor prognosis in the patients with MPM. This score provides useful information for selecting patients who will benefit from the treatment.”
The researchers say that each of the measures taken in the CONUT score provides status that are specifically valuable in mesothelioma, including systemic inflammation, immune response, and caloric reserves. Not only does it provide physicians with a sense of how well a patient will do, but also will guide their decision making regarding which treatment options are likely to pose a threat.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, you need to take all steps possible to make sure that they are in optimal health and have optimal resources working in their favor. This also applies to having the best possible legal representation. For information on how we can help, contact us at 1-800-966-2244.