Head and neck cancer survivors' preferences for and evaluations of a post-treatment dietary intervention

Sylvia L. Crowder, Katherine G. Douglas, Andrew D. Frugé, William R. Carroll, Sharon A. Spencer, Julie L. Locher, Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Laura Q. Rogers, Anna E. Arthur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Dietary preferences vary depending on cancer type. The purpose of this study was to report dietary intervention preferences and a study program evaluation from post-treatment head and neck cancer survivors participating in a dietary intervention. Methods: Between January 2015 and August 2016, 24 head and neck cancer survivors participated in a 12-week randomized clinical dietary intervention trial that promoted weekly consumption of 2.5 cups of cruciferous vegetables and 3.5 cups of green leafy vegetables. At study completion, survivors completed a preferences survey and a study program evaluation to probe interests and improvement aspects for planning future dietary intervention trials. Descriptive statistics (means and frequencies) were generated for multiple choice question responses. Responses to open-ended questions were recorded and grouped based on themes, and verified by quality assurance checks by a second study team member. Results: Twenty-three survivors completed the preferences and evaluation surveys (response rate 96%). Overall, most participants reported a preference for one-on-one telephone counseling from a registered dietitian nutritionist before beginning treatment. Ninety-six percent of participants ranked the overall study program as "very good" to "excellent," and all agreed the objectives of the study were clear, the study staff was helpful and easy to contact, and the registered dietitian nutritionist was knowledgeable. Conclusions: Future research and dietary intervention planning for head and neck cancer survivors should focus on strategies to promote one-on-one telephone or other distance-based counseling combined with face-to-face visits, according to survivor preference.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number57
JournalNutrition Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 10 2019


  • Barriers
  • Cancer survivors
  • Diet
  • Preferences
  • Survivorship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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