Cancer Diseases and Conditions

Why Does Cancer Cause Weight Loss?


People with Cancer usually experience progressive and profound weight loss caused by loss of both, muscle mass and body fat. The weight loss is usually accompanied by anemia, reduced appetite, and extreme weakness.

Understanding Cancer Cachexia

Cancer cachexia is a syndrome that makes the body waste away. The syndrome is most common during advanced cancer stages although one of the most common cancer symptoms during the early stages is unexplained weight loss. Cancer usually causes the body to lose over 5% of the body weight in a very short time.

Cancer cachexia affects 50% to 85% of all cancer sufferers. They syndrome is however common is some cancers only like lung, bowel and pancreatic cancer. Cancer cachexia compromises the quality of life a sufferer lives. It also makes cancer treatments hard to tolerate. In fact, the syndrome is responsible for causing death in 25% to 33% of all cancer patients. Extreme weight loss is linked to poorer prognosis.