Cancer cachexia is a complex metabolic process affecting up to 80% of patients suffering from
an advanced-stage cancer. Moreover, 20 to 40% of all cancer deaths are caused directly by
cachexia. Head and neck (H&N) cancer patients are nutritionally vulnerable since tumour
localisation can interfere with food intake, since alcohol and tobacco abuse - two
etiological risk factors of H&N cancer - are associated with nutritional deficits, and since
the intensive treatment can lead to progressive weight loss. Recently, omega-3 fatty acids
have gained interest for their beneficial effects in several diseases. Moreover, nutritional
supplementation enriched with omega-3 FA could potentially maintain body weight in cancer
patients undergoing intensive treatment.
Aims In this study, the investigators want to evaluate the use of omega-3 FA supplementation
as nutritional and the investigators would like to identify potential risk factors,
biomarkers and objective measurement tools which can predict therapy-induced cachexia.