Relationship between corticosteroid dose and declines in physical function among allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation patients.

Supportive care in cancer : official journal of the Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer

PubMedID: 23475197

Morishita S, Kaida K, Yamauchi S, Sota K, Ishii S, Ikegame K, Kodama N, Ogawa H, Domen K. Relationship between corticosteroid dose and declines in physical function among allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation patients. Support Care Cancer. 2013;21(8):2161-9.
PURPOSE
The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between corticosteroid dose and degree of physical function decrease in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) patients during the early stage of recovery. We further investigated the confounding factors affecting loss of physical function.

METHODS
The study included 113 patients who underwent allo-HSCT between July 2007 and April 2012 at Hyogo College of Medicine Hospital in Japan. Physical function was assessed using tests for hand-grip strength, knee-extensor strength, and the 6-min walk test (6MWT). Fatigue was measured using the Piper Fatigue Scale. Total corticosteroid dose, frequency of physical therapy, body weight, and nutritional status were also collected from medical records.

RESULTS
Total corticosteroid dose was correlated with decrease of hand-grip and knee-extensors strength (P < 0.01) but was not correlated with 6MWT performance. Results of multivariate analysis confirmed that low physical function was associated not only with high corticosteroid dose but also with low frequency of physical therapy, increase in fatigue, and body weight loss (P < 0.05). Also, hemoglobin levels were associated with 6MWT (P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS
This study showed the relationship between corticosteroid dose and declines in physical function and also showed other clinical factors affecting loss of physical function among allo-HSCT patients. Our results indicate that the effectiveness of rehabilitation may be influenced by corticosteroid treatment.