open access

Vol 6, No 2 (2021)
Original article
Published online: 2021-06-30
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Subjective evaluation of skin toxicity and quality of life in patients undergoing anti-cancer treatment at the Department of Cancer Chemotherapy

Kinga Krawiec1, Izabela Janicka1, Jakub Woźniak1, Sylwia Dębska-Szmich1, Magdalena Krakowska1, Urszula Czernek1, Piotr Potemski1
DOI: 10.5603/MRJ.2021.0028
·
Medical Research Journal 2021;6(2):99-107.
Affiliations
  1. Chemotherapy Clinic, Oncology Department, Medical University of Lodz Nicolaus Copernicus Multidisciplinary Center for Oncology and Traumatology, 62 Pabianicka St, 93–513 Lodz, Poland

open access

Vol 6, No 2 (2021)
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Published online: 2021-06-30

Abstract

Introduction: Skin complications are a frequent side effect of oncological treatment, which may impair patients’ quality of life. The aim of this study is a subjective assessment of skin toxicity and life quality during anticancer treatment.

Material and methods: We analysed patients with malignant cancer, receiving conventional chemotherapy, molecularly targeted drugs, or both, between January 2019 and February 2020, for at least six weeks. The researchers’ questionnaire assessed the type and intensity of skin toxicity, its impact on the emotional state and life quality. Subjective needs concerning education about the potential toxicity of treatment and dermatological care were analysed. Global quality of life was assessed using the EORTC QLQ-C30 scale.

Results: We analysed 78 patients, aged 27–78 years (41 men; 37 women). Twelve patients received anti- EGFR antibody. Skin toxicity influence on emotional state and life quality was assessed by age, gender, duration and type of therapy. Skin complications were reported by 95% of patients, 53% confirmed the influence of skin toxicity on emotional state and 32% on everyday functioning. The inverse correlation between life quality and skin lesions’ severity was found (correlation coefficient = 0,33, p < 0,0001). 31% of patients were willing to have a dermatologist in the team of leading doctors. 28% reported a total lack of possible skin side effects information. 82% declared total skin toxicity acceptance in case of the good effect of anti-cancer therapy.

Conclusions: Dermal toxicity negatively affects various areas of patient functioning. Improvement can be made by proper education of patients, effective prevention and treatment.

Abstract

Introduction: Skin complications are a frequent side effect of oncological treatment, which may impair patients’ quality of life. The aim of this study is a subjective assessment of skin toxicity and life quality during anticancer treatment.

Material and methods: We analysed patients with malignant cancer, receiving conventional chemotherapy, molecularly targeted drugs, or both, between January 2019 and February 2020, for at least six weeks. The researchers’ questionnaire assessed the type and intensity of skin toxicity, its impact on the emotional state and life quality. Subjective needs concerning education about the potential toxicity of treatment and dermatological care were analysed. Global quality of life was assessed using the EORTC QLQ-C30 scale.

Results: We analysed 78 patients, aged 27–78 years (41 men; 37 women). Twelve patients received anti- EGFR antibody. Skin toxicity influence on emotional state and life quality was assessed by age, gender, duration and type of therapy. Skin complications were reported by 95% of patients, 53% confirmed the influence of skin toxicity on emotional state and 32% on everyday functioning. The inverse correlation between life quality and skin lesions’ severity was found (correlation coefficient = 0,33, p < 0,0001). 31% of patients were willing to have a dermatologist in the team of leading doctors. 28% reported a total lack of possible skin side effects information. 82% declared total skin toxicity acceptance in case of the good effect of anti-cancer therapy.

Conclusions: Dermal toxicity negatively affects various areas of patient functioning. Improvement can be made by proper education of patients, effective prevention and treatment.

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Keywords

skin toxicity, quality of life, systemic treatment, monoclonal antibodies, epidermal growth factor receptor

About this article
Title

Subjective evaluation of skin toxicity and quality of life in patients undergoing anti-cancer treatment at the Department of Cancer Chemotherapy

Journal

Medical Research Journal

Issue

Vol 6, No 2 (2021)

Article type

Original article

Pages

99-107

Published online

2021-06-30

DOI

10.5603/MRJ.2021.0028

Bibliographic record

Medical Research Journal 2021;6(2):99-107.

Keywords

skin toxicity
quality of life
systemic treatment
monoclonal antibodies
epidermal growth factor receptor

Authors

Kinga Krawiec
Izabela Janicka
Jakub Woźniak
Sylwia Dębska-Szmich
Magdalena Krakowska
Urszula Czernek
Piotr Potemski

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