Baseline Edmonton Symptom Assessment System and survival in metastatic renal cell carcinoma

J. Graham, J. Gingerich, P. Lambert, A. Alamri, P. Czaykowski



Baseline symptom burden as measured using the Edmonton Symptom Assessment System (esas), a patient-reported, validated, and reliable tool measuring symptom severity in 9 separate domains, might yield prognostic information in patients receiving treatment for metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mrcc) and might add to the existing prognostic models.


In this retrospective single-centre cohort study, we included patients receiving first-line sunitinib therapy for mrcc between 2008 and 2012. Baseline variables included information relevant to the pre-existing prognostic models and pre-treatment esas summation scores (added together across all 9 domains), with higher scores representing greater symptom burden. We used Kaplan–Meier curves and Cox regression modelling to determine if symptom burden can provide prognostic information with respect to overall survival.


We identified 68 patients receiving first-line therapy for mrcc. Most had intermediate- or poor-risk disease based on both the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (mskcc) and the International Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Database Consortium (imdc) models. The median baseline esas summation score was 16 (range: 6–57). In univariable analysis, the hazard ratio for overall survival was 1.270 (p = 0.0047) per 10-unit increase in summation esas. In multivariable analysis, the hazard ratio was 1.208 (p = 0.0362) when controlling for mskcc risk group and 1.240 (p = 0.019) when controlling for imdc risk group.


Baseline symptom burden as measured by esas score appears to provide prognostic information for survival in patients with mrcc. Those results should encourage the investigation of patient-reported symptom scales as potential prognostic indicators for patients with advanced cancer.


Kidney cancer; renal cell carcinoma; patient-reported outcomes; prognosis; Edmonton Symptom Assessment System

Full Text:



Copyright © 2019 Multimed Inc.
ISSN: 1198-0052 (Print) ISSN: 1718-7729 (Online)