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Weight Loss and Mortality in Overweight and Obese Cancer Survivors: A Systematic Review

Jackson, SE; Heinrich, M; Beeken, RJ; Wardle, J; (2017) Weight Loss and Mortality in Overweight and Obese Cancer Survivors: A Systematic Review. PLoS One , 12 (1) , Article e0169173. 10.1371/journal.pone.0169173. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Excess adiposity is a risk factor for poorer cancer survival, but there is uncertainty over whether losing weight reduces the risk. We conducted a critical review of the literature examining weight loss and mortality in overweight or obese cancer survivors. METHODS: We systematically searched PubMed and EMBASE for articles reporting associations between weight loss and mortality (cancer-specific or all-cause) in overweight/obese patients with obesity-related cancers. Where available, data from the same studies on non-overweight patients were compared. RESULTS: Five articles describing observational studies in breast cancer survivors were included. Four studies reported a positive association between weight loss and mortality in overweight/obese survivors, and the remaining study observed no significant association. Results were similar for non-overweight survivors. Quality assessment indicated high risk of bias across studies. CONCLUSIONS: There is currently a lack of observational evidence that weight loss improves survival for overweight and obese cancer survivors. However, the potential for bias in these studies is considerable and the results likely reflect the consequences of disease-related rather than intentional weight loss. There is a need for stronger study designs, incorporating measures of intentionality of weight loss, and extended to other cancers.

Type: Article
Title: Weight Loss and Mortality in Overweight and Obese Cancer Survivors: A Systematic Review
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0169173
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0169173
Language: English
Additional information: © 2017 Jackson et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Behavioural Science and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Epidemiology and Public Health
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1535955
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