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Merlini L.,Ospedale Civile S | Carteni G.,Azienda Ospedaliera di Rilievo Nazionale Antonio Cardarelli | Iacobelli S.,Ospedale Clinicizzato SS Annunziata | Stelitano C.,Azienda Ospedaliera Bianchi Melacrino Morelli | And 6 more authors.
Cancer Management and Research | Year: 2013

Purpose: To describe the prevalence and management of anemia in cancer patients. Methods: This cross-sectional, observational survey was conducted in Italy and Austria. Centers prespecified one day, during a 4-month enrollment window, to report specific data collected during normal clinical practice for patients with non-myeloid tumors attending for chemotherapy (±radiotherapy) treatment. The primary endpoint was the prevalence of anemia as determined using a prespecified algorithm: hemoglobin (Hb) ≤10g/dL on/within 3days prior to visit; ongoing anemia treatment; physician diagnosis of anemia, together with ≥1 anemia symptom. Results: Between November 18, 2010 and March 18, 2011, data for 1412 patients were collected (Italy n = 1130; Austria n  = 282). Most patients (n  = 1136; 80%) had solid tumors; 809 (57%) had received ≤3 chemotherapy cycles. The prevalence of anemia was 32% (95% confidence interval: 29.4%-34.2%); 196 patients (14%) were deemed anemic based on Hb ≤10  g/dL, 131 (9%) on ongoing anemia treatment, and 121 (9%) on physician diagnosis/anemia symptom. Overall, 1153 patients (82%) had Hb data; mean (standard deviation [SD]) Hb levels were 11.7  (1.7) g/dL. In total, 456 patients (32%) had anemia symptoms: fatigue (n  = 392; 28%), depression (n  = 122; 9%), and dyspnea (n  = 107; 8%) were most common. Fifty-one patients (4%) had had their current chemotherapy cycle delayed due to anemia. On visit day, or ≤28  days prior, 91 (6%), 188 (13%), and 81 patients (6%) had evidence of whole blood/red blood cell transfusion, erythropoiesis-stimulating agent use, or iron use, respectively. Conclusion: On the prespecified study day, one-third of patients with non-myeloid tumors undergoing chemotherapy were found to be anemic and 13% had evidence of erythropoiesis-stimulating agent use then or in the 28  days prior. © 2013 Merlini et  al, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd.

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