Background: The aim of this longitudinal study was to determine age- and sex-standardised prevalence rates of cancer-related fatigue in different groups of patients.
Methods: This was a prospective study in a cohort of N=1494 cancer patients investigating fatigue at three time points t1-t3 (t1: admission to hospital, t2: discharge, t3: half a year after t1). Fatigue was measured with the Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory. Age- and sex-adjusted norms were derived from a representative community sample of N=2037, using a cutoff at the 75th percentile.
Results: At admission to the hospital, 32% of the patients were classified as fatigued. At discharge, the overall prevalence rate was 40%, and at half a year after t1, prevalence was 34%. Fatigue prevalence rates differed according to tumour stage, site, age, and sex of the patients.
Conclusion: The prevalence rates provided by this study can be used for the planning of research and clinical routine.