Dr Aruah Chinedu Simeon graduated in 2004 from University of Nigeria Nsukka(UNN) where he obtained MBBS Nigeria, enrolled for residency training in Radiation oncology at the National Hospital Abuja, Nigeria, qualified in 2014 and got inducted as a Fellow of West African College of Surgeons (FWACS)Radiation Oncology in March 2015. He won National Hospital Abuja Research Grant 2013 during his dissertation work.Dr Chinedu Aruah has a Master's degree in Public Health (MPH) from University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN ). He founded an NGO Pathfinder Healthcare Foundation(PHF) to creat Cancer awareness among rural dwellers.He is currently working at the National Hospital Abuja, Nigeria as a Researcher and Consultant Radiation Oncologist with interest in Public
Anaemia is one of the predisposing factors to poor patient outcome in cancer treatment and more than 50% of cancer patients will receive radiotherapy in the course of their treatment. It has been difficult to establish global or National benchmark on the baseline hemoglobin of patients selected for cancer therapy especially at different stages of the tumors. Various centers use different levels but there is a need to establish a national cut-off point. Establishing a uniform benchmark will inform a global best practice and increase the patient’s outcome and quality of life.
Objective: To examine the change in Hb level of cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy using serial Hb measurement.
Materials and Methods: A total of 63 voluntary patients with solid tumors were recruited within a period of 8 months. Baseline demographic characteristics and type of tumor were obtained. Pre-treatment Hb was measured on the first day of consultation. Patients were simulated and treated with Linear Accelerator. Their Hb levels were measured every 2 weeks during therapy. The whole process was terminated after 3 consecutive Hb reading.
Results and Data Analysis: Data collected was analyzed using SPSS version 10. Out of the 63 cancer patients, 92.1% were female and 7.9% were male considering that females report more to the clinic than males coupled with the fact that breast was mainly involved in this study. The age range was 25 – 75years, with a median age of 50years. Breast 47.6% (30) was the commonest site of the tumour; 74.6% (47) presented with stage III disease. Prevalence of anemia in the study was 42.9%. At the end of therapy 55.6% (63) cancer patients had their Hb level between 11.52 – 12.13g/dl. At P-value > 0.05 there was no statistical significance on distribution of mean Hb, standard deviation based on sex and treatment type.
Conclusion/recommendation: Radiotherapy has no significant effect of haemoglobin especially in patients with high baseline haemoglobin between 11g/dl to 12g/dl. Prevalence of anemia in the studied patients was 42.9%. We recommend a benchmark of 11g/dl minimum for any patient being selected for radiotherapy in Nigeria.