Prevalence of neurocognitive and perceived speech deficits in patients with head and neck cancer before treatment: Associations with demographic, behavioral, and disease-related factors

NET-QUBIC Consortium

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Abstract

Background: Neurocognition and speech, relevant domains in head and neck cancer (HNC), may be affected pretreatment. However, the prevalence of pretreatment deficits and their possible concurrent predictors are poorly understood. Methods: Using an HNC prospective cohort (Netherlands Quality of Life and Biomedical Cohort Study, N ≥ 444) with a cross-sectional design, we investigated the estimated prevalence of pretreatment deficits and their relationship with selected demographic, behavioral, and disease-related factors. Results: Using objective assessments, rates of moderate-to-severe neurocognitive deficit ranged between 4% and 8%. From patient-reported outcomes, 6.5% of patients reported high levels of cognitive failures and 46.1% reported speech deficits. Patient-reported speech functioning was worse in larynx compared to other subsites. Other nonspeech outcomes were unrelated to any variable. Patient-reported neurocognitive and speech functioning were modestly correlated, especially in the larynx group. Conclusions: These findings indicate that a subgroup of patients with HNC shows pretreatment deficits, possibly accentuated in the case of larynx tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)332-344
Number of pages13
JournalHead and Neck
Volume44
Issue number2
Early online date19 Nov 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Dutch Cancer Society (KWF‐Alpe d'Huzes, to NET‐QUBIC Consortium).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. Head & Neck published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.

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