Original Research Article| Volume 223, ISSUE 5, P927-932, May 2022

Weight loss during neoadjuvant therapy for pancreatic cancer does not predict poor outcomes

Published:October 07, 2021DOI:


      • Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is become more popular for pancreatic cancer.
      • There are no patient-centered metrics to predict response to neoadjuvant therapy.
      • Most patients lose or maintain weight during neoadjuvant therapy.
      • Weight loss does not predict poor outcomes.



      Weight changes during neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) for pancreatic cancer (PDAC) are not well studied. We hypothesized that weight loss may predict poor outcomes.


      Weight change from NAC initiation to pancreatectomy was grouped: gain (≥5%), stable, and loss (≥5%). Pathologic, postoperative, and survival outcomes were compared.


      95 patients were included: 31.6% lost weight, 58.9% maintained weight, and 9.5% gained weight. There were no differences in chemotherapeutic regimens. Median recurrence-free survival (RFS) and overall survival (OS) were similar between patients with stable weight and those who lost weight (RFS: 9.6vs14.0months; OS: 25.8vs26.7months). Among those who gained weight, RFS (29.5months) and OS (38.4months) were greater relative to the other weight categories. On multivariable regression, weight gain was associated with improved RFS compared to loss (HR = 0.16).


      Most patients maintain or lose weight during NAC, and weight loss does not predict poor outcomes. Weight gain may predict improved RFS.


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