Nutrition Support and Therapy in Patients with Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinomas
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- Gee, A.C., Kiraly, L., McCarthy, M.S. et al. Curr Gastroenterol Rep (2012) 14: 349. doi:10.1007/s11894-012-0273-5
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Head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCC) present a unique set of challenges in both the treatment of the disease and in support of the patient afflicted with the cancer. A major challenge is the nutritional support of these patients. Often, patients with HNSCC are malnourished at baseline due to an underlying dysphagia. Many others develop dysphagia as a result of their surgical resection and external beam radiation therapy. This dysphagia further exacerbates the chronic dehydration and malnutrition. This article will review strategies to provide nutritional support to HNSCC patients and also to review nutritional strategies that may decrease the morbidity and mortality associated with HNSCC treatment.