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Oncology (Williston Park). 1992 Jan;6(1):125-30; discussion 132, 137.

Current pharmacological management of anorexia in cancer patients.

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  • Palliative Care Unit, Edmonton General Hospital, University of Alberta, Canada.


Cancer cachexia is one of the most prevalent and devastating syndromes associated with advanced cancer. Its main clinical manifestation is profound anorexia. Progestational drugs have shown meaningful effects on appetite, food intake, and nutritional status in patients with advanced cancer and AIDS, and could be useful in managing anorexia. Corticosteroids also seem to produce increased appetite, but these effects are short-lived. Cyproheptadine, hydrazine sulfate, and cannabinoids also are being studied in the management of cancer-induced anorexia, but their role has not yet been clearly established. Future research should evaluate how the different drugs affect specific symptoms associated with cachexia.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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