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Alison Burton Shepherd

Alison Burton Shepherd

Vocare Group, UK

Title: The Importance of optimizing nutritional status in patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy


Alison Burton-Shepherd is a Registered Nutritionist (Scientist) and Senior Lecturer in Adult Nursing at De Montfort University Leicester UK. She is a part time Advanced Nurse Practitioner and Non Medical Prescriber. Recently she became an Inspector for the Care Quality Commission inspecting primary medical services to ensure that high standards of clinical care are being maintained. She is proud to be a Queens Nurse a title given to nurses who have achieved and continue to strive for excellence.


Chemo-radiotherapy (CRT) causes or exacerbates symptoms, such as alteration or loss of taste, mucositis, xerostomia, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, with consequent worsening of malnutrition. It is well known that radiotherapy is invariably associated with mucositis, xerostomia, dysphagia, haematological toxicities and other acute side effects, whose incidence increases when chemotherapy is also administered, and that oral mucositis incidence leads to higher unplanned breaks and delays in radiotherapy administration. In addition, in many patients such toxicities may be very severe and even life threatening and may lead to treatment interruptions that are invariably associated with poorer outcome. 

This presentation will review best practice in the nutritional management of patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy