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Descriptive study of the type and severity of decompensation caused by comorbidity in a population of patients with laryngeal squamous cancer

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Vinidh Paleri


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The aim of this study was to systematically identify the type and severity of all comorbid conditions in a cohort of 180 patients with laryngeal squamous cancer. The authors retrospectively surveyed the notes using the Adult Comorbidity Evaluation - 27 index (ACE-27) and applying a systematic process of data abstraction that had previously been shown to be accurate and reliable. The results provided insight into the distribution, site and extent of decompensation caused by comorbidity. It was found that 116 (64.4 per cent) of 180 patients in the study population had some form of comorbid illness, with the cardiovascular and respiratory systems being the top two body systems affected in 43.9 per cent and 24.1 per cent respectively. One-quarter (25.8 per cent) of these 116 patients had comorbid illnesses in more than one body system. Concurrent neurological disease is associated with high mortality. The ACE - 27 is a comprehensive instrument that codes all forms of comorbid diseases in the head and neck cancer setting excepting malnutrition. This study suggests that routine collection of comorbidity will be important in future outcomes analysis and in comparing treatment results between centres. Apparent improvements in treatment outcome following newer therapeutic modalities will have to take into account any changes in the comorbidity type and burden over time.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Paleri V, Narayan R, Wight RG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Laryngology and Otology

Year: 2004

Volume: 118

Issue: 7

Pages: 517-521

ISSN (print): 0022-2151

ISSN (electronic): 1748-5460

Publisher: Cambridge University Press