Chronic Systemic Symptoms in Head and Neck Cancer Patients.J Natl Cancer Inst Monogr 2019; 2019(53)JN
The systemic effects and manifestations of disease and treatment have been of interest for millennium. Until recently, basic and clinical research is just now reaching a watershed. Systemic symptoms usually do not occur in isolation but rather in clusters; however, much of the cutting-edge research pertaining to the etiology, mechanism, manifestations, and moderators of systemic symptoms in humans has been directed at individual symptoms, thus creating silos of knowledge. Breaching these silos and bridging the knowledge from disparate arenas of investigation to build a comprehensive depiction of acute and chronic systemic symptoms has been a challenge. In addition, much of the recent work in systemic symptoms has been conducted in the setting of nonmalignant disease. The degree to which the findings from other chronic disease processes can be translated into the oncologic realm is unknown. This article will explore inflammation as a major contributing factor to systemic symptoms and sickness behavior, discuss the most common manifestations in cancer survivors, and, where available, discuss specific data pertaining to head and neck cancer survivors.