Context Although corticosteroids are widely used to relieve cancer-related fatigue (CRF), information regarding the factors predicting responses to corticosteroids remains limited. Objectives The aim of this study was to identify potential factors predicting responses to corticosteroids for CRF in advanced cancer patients. Methods Inclusion criteria for this multicenter, prospective, observational study were patients who had metastatic or locally advanced cancer and had a fatigue intensity score of 4 or more on a 0–10 Numerical Rating Scale (NRS). Univariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to identify the factors predicting two-point reduction or more in NRS on day 3. Results Among 179 patients who received corticosteroids, 86 (48%; 95% CI 41%–56%) had a response with two-point reduction or more. Factors that significantly predicted responses were performance status score of 3 or more, Palliative Performance Scale score more than 40, absence of ascites, absence of drowsiness, absence of depression, serum albumin level greater than 3 mg/dL, serum sodium level greater than 135 mEq/L, and baseline NRS score greater than 5. A multivariate analysis showed that the independent factors predicting responses were baseline NRS score greater than 5 (odds ratio [OR] 6.6, 95% CI 2.8–15.4), Palliative Performance Scale score more than 40 (OR 4.4, 95% CI 2.1–9.3), absence of drowsiness (OR 3.4, 95% CI 1.7–6.9), absence of ascites (OR 2.3, 95% CI 1.1–4.7), and absence of pleural effusion (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.0–5.0). Conclusion Treatment responses to corticosteroids for CRF may be predicted by baseline symptom intensity, performance status, drowsiness, and severity of fluid retention symptoms. Larger prospective studies are needed to confirm these results.
- palliative care
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine