Impact of body fat distribution and sarcopenia on the overall survival in patients with spinal metastases receiving radiotherapy treatment: a prospective cohort study
An increasing number of patients is diagnosed with spinal metastases due to elevated cancer incidence and improved overall survival. Patients with symptomatic spinal bone metastases often receive radiotherapy with or without surgical stabilisation. Patients with a life expectancy of less than 3 months are generally deemed unfit for surgery, therefore adequate pre-treatment assessment of life expectancy is necessary. The aim of this study was to assess new factors associated with overall
... for this category of patients.Patients and methods: Patients who received radiotherapy for thoracic or lumbar spinal metastases from June 2013 to December 2016 were included in this study. The pre-treatment planning CT for radiotherapy treatment was used to assess the patient's visceral fat area, subcutaneous fat area, total muscle area and skeletal muscle density on a single transverse slice at the L3 level. The total muscle area was used to assess sarcopenia. Furthermore, data were collected on age, sex, primary tumour, Karnofsky performance score, medical history, number of bone metastases, non-bone metastases and neurological symptoms. Univariable and multivariable cox regressions were performed to determine the association between our variables of interest and the survival at 90 and 365 days.Results: A total of 310 patients was included. The median age was 67 years. Overall survival rates for 90 and 365 days were 71% and 36% respectively. For 90- and 365-day survival, the Karnofsky performance score, muscle density and primary tumour were independently significantly associated. The visceral or subcutaneous fat area and their ratio and sarcopenia were not independently associated with overall survival.Conclusions: Of the body morphology, only muscle density was statistically significant associated with overall survival after 90 and 365 days in patients with spinal bone metastases. Body fat distribution was not significantly associated with overall survival.