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Nutrition and physical activity professional education in gastrointestinal oncology: a national multidisciplinary survey
  1. Marc Hilmi1,2,3,
  2. Anna Pellat2,4,
  3. Olivier Benoit5,
  4. Aude-Marie Foucaut6,
  5. Jean-Christophe Mino7,
  6. Agnes Kauffmann7,
  7. Fanny Rochet7,
  8. Emmanuel Heuze8,
  9. Thomas Pudlarz3,
  10. Natacha Naoun3,
  11. Marie-Line Garcia-Larnicol2,
  12. Christine Delpeut2,
  13. Frederique Peschaud5 and
  14. Cindy Neuzillet2,9
  1. 1 Medical Oncology, Curie Institute Hospital Group, Saint Cloud, France
  2. 2 GERCOR, Paris, France
  3. 3 AERIO, Paris, France
  4. 4 Department of Medical Oncology, Hospital Saint-Antoine, Paris, Île-de-France, France
  5. 5 Department of Surgery and Oncology, Hôpital Ambroise-Pare, Boulogne-Billancourt, Île-de-France, France
  6. 6 Laboratoire Educations et Pratiques de Santé (EA 3412), Paris University, Paris, Île-de-France, France
  7. 7 Siel Bleu, Paris, France
  8. 8 Nutricia, Paris, France
  9. 9 Medical Oncology Department, Curie Institute Hospital Group, Saint-Cloud, Île-de-France, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Cindy Neuzillet, Medical Oncology Department, Curie Institute Hospital Group, Saint-Cloud, Île-de-France, France; cindy.neuzillet{at}


Objectives Sarcopenia, present in more than 50% of digestive oncology patients, has a negative impact on clinical outcomes. Nutrition and adapted physical activity are two major interventions for the management of sarcopenia. However, young hepato-gastroenterologists, oncologists and surgeons in France have limited awareness on these topics. We aimed to evaluate the need for training programmes of physicians (residents and senior doctors) involved in digestive oncology on nutrition and adapted physical activity.

Methods A 42-question survey was developed, by a working group of clinicians, dieticians and adapted physical activity teachers, to assess five areas related to demographics of respondents, nutrition practices, nutrition training, adapted physical activity practices and adapted physical activity training. The national survey was undertaken between April and July of 2019.

Results 230 physicians participated in the survey; 34% were hepato-gastroenterologists, 31% were oncologists, 23% were surgeons and 40% were residents. Sixty-one per cent of participants had received training in nutrition and only 21% in adapted physical activity. Ninety per cent of the physicians expressed their desire for more effective training on these two topics. Disparities in clinical practices were observed between hepato-gastroenterologists, oncologists and surgeons.

Conclusions More initial and continuing training on nutrition and adapted physical activity is needed for French physicians in the current digestive oncology clinical practice.

  • education and training
  • cancer
  • supportive care
  • symptoms and symptom management

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  • Contributors CN and MH had the idea for the article and designed the study. MH collected and assembled the data. MH, CN and A-MF analysed and interpreted the data. MH, CN, AP and OB wrote the manuscript. MH, AP, OB, A-MF, J-CM, AK, FR, EH, TP, NN, M-LG-L, CD, FP and CN reviewed and edited the manuscript. CN and MH are responsible for the overall content as guarantors. MH, AP, OB, A-MF, J-CM, AK, FR, EH, TP, NN, M-LG-L, CD, FP and CN agreed on the submitted version.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests CN reports personal fees from Servier, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Amgen, Merck, MSD, Novartis, Incyte, Nutricia, Baxter, Fresenius Kabi, OSE Immunotherapeutics, Roche and AstraZeneca outside the submitted work. EH reports personal fees from Nutricia outside the submitted work.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement All data relevant to the study are included in the article.