Objective: To evaluate the use of the scored Patient-Generated Subjective Global Assessment (PG-SGA) as a nutrition assessment tool in patients with cancer.
Design: An observational study assessing the nutritional status of patients with cancer.
Setting: Oncology ward of a private tertiary Australian hospital.
Subjects: Seventy-one cancer patients aged 18-92 y.
Intervention: Scored PG-SGA questionnaire, comparison of scored PG-SGA with subjective global assessment (SGA), sensitivity, specificity.
Results: Some 24% (17) of 71 patients were well nourished, 59% (42) of patients were moderately or suspected of being malnourished and 17% (12) of patients were severely malnourished according to subjective global assessment (SGA). The PG-SGA score had a sensitivity of 98% and a specificity of 82% at predicting SGA classification. There was a significant difference in the median PG-SGA scores for each of the SGA classifications (P<0.001), with the severely malnourished patients having the highest scores. Re-admission within 30 days of discharge was significantly different between SGA groups (P=0.037). The mortality rate within 30 days of discharge was not significantly different between SGA groups (P=0.305). The median length of stay of well nourished patients (SGA A) was significantly lower than that of the malnourished (SGA B+C) patients (P=0.024).
Conclusion: The scored PG-SGA is an easy to use nutrition assessment tool that allows quick identification and prioritisation of malnutrition in hospitalised patients with cancer.