No influence of sarcopenia on survival of ovarian cancer patients in a prospective validation study

Jorne Ubachs, Simone N. Koole, Max Lahaye, Cristina Fabris, Leigh Bruijs, Jules Schagen van Leeuwen, Henk W. R. Schreuder, R. H. Hermans, I. H. de Hingh, J. van der Velden, H. J. Arts, M. van Ham, P. van Dam, P. Vuylsteke, Jacco Bastings, Roy F. P. M. Kruitwagen, Sandrina Lambrechts, Steven W. M. Olde Damink, Sander S. Rensen, Toon Van GorpGabe S. Sonke, Willemien J. van Driel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Objective. Decrease in skeletal muscle index (SMI) during neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NACT) has been associated with worse outcome in patients with advanced ovarian cancer. To validate these findings, we tested if a decrease in SMI was a prognostic factor for a homogenous cohort of patients who received NACT in the randomized phase 3 OVHIPEC-trial.

Methods. CT-scans were performed at baseline and after two cycles of neoadjuvant chemotherapy in stage III ovarian cancer patients. The SMI (skeletal muscle area in cm(2) divided by body surface area in m(2)) was calculated using SliceOMatic software. The difference in SMI between both CT-scans (Delta SMI) was calculated. Cox-regression analyses were performed to analyze the independent effect of a difference in SMI (Delta SMI) on outcome. Log-rank tests were performed to plot recurrence-free (RFS) and overall survival (OS). The mean number of adverse events per patient were compared between groups using t-tests.

Results. Paired CT-scans were available for 212 out of 245 patients (87%). Thirty-four of 74 patients (58%) in the group with a decrease in Delta SMI and 73 of 138 of the patients (53%) in the group with stable/increase in Delta SMI had died. Median RFS and OS did not differ significantly (p = 0.297 and p = 0.764) between groups. Patients with a decrease in SMI experienced more pre-operative adverse events, and more grade 3-4 adverse events.

Conclusion. Decreased SMI during neoadjuvant chemotherapy was not associated with worse outcome in patients with stage III ovarian cancer included in the OVHIPEC-trial. However, a strong association between decreasing SMI and adverse events was found. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)706-711
Number of pages6
JournalGynecologic Oncology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Sarcopenia
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Cachexia
  • Survival

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