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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Body-composition changes in patients who gain weight while receiving megestrol acetate.

PURPOSE: Randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials have now established that megestrol acetate causes appetite stimulation and weight gain in patients with anorexia and/or cachexia. There is a paucity of available data to delineate the substance of this increased weight. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and tritiated body water methodologies, we performed body-composition measurements in 12 patients with advanced cancer before the institution of oral megestrol acetate (800 mg/d) and at subsequent 2-month intervals. RESULTS: Seven of the 12 patients gained weight (2.1 to 16.5 kg) and had repeat body-composition measurements performed at the time of maximum weight gain. The vast majority of the gained weight was clearly from an increase in adipose tissue, while there was a suggestion that an increase in body fluid was responsible for a minority of the weight gain. CONCLUSION: Megestrol acetate-induced weight gain is primarily the result of an increase in body mass.[1]


  1. Body-composition changes in patients who gain weight while receiving megestrol acetate. Loprinzi, C.L., Schaid, D.J., Dose, A.M., Burnham, N.L., Jensen, M.D. J. Clin. Oncol. (1993) [Pubmed]
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