Patients, family members and healthcare professionals’ top ten research priorities for adults receiving home parenteral nutrition for malignant or benign disease

Anne Marie Sowerbutts, Simon Lal, Loris Pironi, Debra Jones, Chloe French, Marianne Riis, Andrew Clamp, Jennifer McCracken, Leanne Williamson, Carolyn Wheatley, Bethany Johnson, Sorrel Burden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background & aims
Home parenteral nutrition (HPN) is the primary treatment for chronic intestinal failure (CIF) due to non-malignant disease and is increasingly used in patients with a diagnosis of cancer. This project engaged with patients, family members and healthcare professionals to ascertain what questions they want researched.

This study followed the five-stage process of the James Lind Alliance that involved (1) setting up a steering group, (2) carrying out an initial survey to gather participants’ questions, (3) data processing, (4) an interim priority setting survey and (5) final priority setting workshop. Surveys were translated and back translated into Italian, Danish and French.

The project was delivered by an international steering committee with representation from Denmark, Italy, the United Kingdom and United States consisting of three patients, six healthcare professionals and facilitated by University researchers. For the first survey, 633 questions were submitted by 292 respondents from 12 countries. There were 79 questions removed as out of scope or already in the published literature. Responses were collated into two interim surveys of 41 questions for benign CIF and 13 questions for HPN and cancer. In the second survey, 216 respondents prioritised their top ten questions. The ordering from the cancer and HPN survey was taken as definitive; top priorities were quality of life, survival, when to commence HPN, using HPN with anti-cancer treatments, access barriers, measuring benefit and ethical implications. For CIF with benign disease, 18 questions were discussed in two workshops attended by 13 patients and 7 healthcare professionals. The questions were ranked using a modified nominal group technique; the top research priorities were prevention and treatment of liver disease, improving central infusion lines, oral absorption, avoiding long-term negative consequences, vascular access, side effects, line infections, decreasing stoma output, quality of life and sleep.

Priorities identified will assist researchers to focus on research questions important to patients, family members and healthcare professionals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-158
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Nutrition ESPEN
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2023


  • Home parenteral support
  • Cancer
  • Intestinal failure

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Manchester Cancer Research Centre


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