Baseline nutritional status is predictive of response to treatment and survival in patients treated by definitive chemoradiotherapy for a locally advanced esophageal cancer

Am J Gastroenterol. 2007 Nov;102(11):2557-63. doi: 10.1111/j.1572-0241.2007.01437.x. Epub 2006 Aug 4.


Objectives: To assess the impact of baseline nutritional status on treatment response and survival in nonmetastatic patients with a locally advanced esophageal cancer (LAEC) treated with definitive chemoradiotherapy (CRT).

Methods: One hundred five patients with LAEC treated by definitive CRT were retrospectively included. The CRT regimen was based on an external radiotherapy (RT) delivered concomitantly to a cisplatin-based chemotherapy (CT). Patients were considered to have a complete response (CR) to CRT when no residual tumor was detected on CT scan and esophagoscopy performed 2 months after the end of CRT. Multivariate analysis of predictive factors of response to CRT and survival were performed using a logistic regression and a Cox model, respectively.

Results: Mean value of baseline nutritional parameters was significantly different between nonresponder (N = 42) and responder (N = 63) patients to CRT (weight loss 10%vs 5.8%, P= 0.0047; serum albumin level 35 g/L vs 38.7 g/L, P= 0.0004; BMI 22.8 kg/m2vs 25.2 kg/m2, P= 0.01). In multivariate analysis, serum albumin level > 35 g/L was the only independent predictive factor of CR to CRT (P= 0.009). Independent prognostic factors of survival were BMI > 18 kg/m2 (P= 0.003), dysphagia Atkinson score <2 (P= 0.008), dose of RT > 50 Grays (Gy) (P < 0.0001) and CR to CRT (P < 0.0001).

Conclusions: Survival was influenced by baseline nutritional status as well as dysphagia, dose of RT, and CR to CRT. Despite the retrospective design of the study, our results may provide the concept basis for performing a prospective nutritional intervention study in patients treated by definitive CRT for an esophageal cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Cisplatin / therapeutic use
  • Deglutition Disorders / complications
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / mortality
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Esophageal Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Radiotherapy Dosage
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Cisplatin