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10-07-2018 | Uitgave 10/2018

Quality of Life Research 10/2018

Quality of life and anorexia/cachexia in lung cancer: validation of the Spanish version of the FAACT instrument

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 10/2018
Oscar Arrieta, Julissa Luvián-Morales, Jenny G. Turcott, Luis F. Oñate-Ocaña



The cancer anorexia–cachexia syndrome (CACS) is highly prevalent in lung cancer (LC) patients (57–61%), and represents the direct cause of death in 20% of cases. Accurately quantifying CACS has been a challenging issue; consequently, this study presents the clinical validation of the Spanish version of the Functional Assessment of Anorexia–Cachexia Therapy (FAACT) scale in LC patients from Latin America.


The Spanish version of the FAACT and the Mexican-Spanish version of the EORTC-QLQ-C30 instruments were applied to a cohort of patients with LC at the National Cancer Institute of Mexico. Reliability and validity tests were performed to assess the psychometric properties of the scales, and clinical validation was assessed considering the association of scales with subjective and objective clinical data.


Two hundred patients were included. Questionnaire compliance rates were high (100%) and the instrument was well accepted in all cases; internal consistency tests demonstrated good convergent and divergent validity of the scale structure. Cronbach’s α coefficient for three out of five basic multi-item scales was > 0.7 (0.55–0.86). FAACT scales presented significant associations with clinical parameters, including biochemical and nutritional variables (i.e., energy intake, p = 0.002), as well as strongly correlated with the appetite loss subscale of the QLQ-C30 questionnaire (r = − 0.624). Physical well-being (p < 0.0009), functional well-being (p = 0.004), anorexia/cachexia scale (p = 0.029), and FAACT total scores (p = 0.0009) were strongly associated to overall survival.


The Spanish version of the FAACT questionnaire is reliable and valid for the assessment of health-related quality of life and CACS in LC patients and can be used in clinical trials.

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