Febrile Neutropenia MASCC Score

Prognoses outcome and risk of complications in patients with cancer who undergo chemotherapy.

There is more information about the score and about the original study in the text below the calculator.

The MASCC score evaluates the risk of patients under cancer treatment to suffer from complications and be diagnosed with febrile neutropenia.

This is a scoring system based on the Evaluation of the Multinational Association for Supportive Care in Cancer (MASCC) Score for Identifying Low Risk Febrile Neutropaenic Patients and has already been validated on international populations.

There are 8 risk factors assessed, each weighing differently (scoring system can be found in the text below), depending on whether it is present or absent.

The maximum score is 26 while the lowest is 0. The higher the score, the lower the chances of an adverse outcome.

There is a cut off at 21 points where all scores of 21 and above are indicative of a low risk of febrile neutropenia.




At onset of fever




Blood Pressure


Active COPD*

*COPD Active chronic bronchitis, emphysema, decrease in forced expiratory volumes, and need for oxygen and corticosteroids therapy with or without bronchodilators.

Solid tumor


Previous fungal infection in patient with a hematologic malignancy


Dehydration requiring parental fluids

  Embed  Print  Share 

Send Us Your Feedback

Steps on how to print your input & results:

1. Fill in the calculator/tool with your values and/or your answer choices and press Calculate.

2. Then you can click on the Print button to open a PDF in a separate window with the inputs and results. You can further save the PDF or print it.

Please note that once you have closed the PDF you need to click on the Calculate button before you try opening it again, otherwise the input and/or results may not appear in the pdf.


MASCC explained

The Multinational Association for Supportive Care in Cancer score is a risk stratifying tool that helps with management of cancer patients under chemotherapy, when febrile neutropenia is suspected (at fever onset).

There are eight items in the score, acting as risk factors for adverse outcome:

MASCC item Interpretation (points)
Age Below 60 (2)
60 or above (0)
At onset of fever Outpatient (3)
Inpatient (0)
Symptoms None or Mild (5)
Moderate (3)
Severe or Moribund (0)
Blood Pressure Systolic BP >90 mmHg (5)
Systolic BP ≤90 mmHg (0)
Active COPD Active chronic bronchitis, emphysema, decrease in forced expiratory volumes, and need for oxygen and corticosteroids therapy with or without bronchodilators.
If COPD absent 4 points, if present 0 points.
Solid tumor Absent (0)
Present (2)
Previous fungal infection in patient with a hematologic malignancy Absent (0)
Present (2)
Dehydration requiring parental fluids Absent (4)
Present (0)

There are other risk stratification tools, such as the Clinical Index of Stable Febrile Neutropenia (CISNE) score, that is able to discriminate between 3 levels of risk: low, intermediate and high.

Adverse outcome can be defined as any of the following conditions or events:

■ Hypotension (systolic blood pressure <90 mmHg);

■ Disseminated intravascular coagulation;

■ Admission to intensive care unit;

■ Arrhythmia or EKG changes requiring intervention;

■ Severe bleeding (requiring transfusion);

■ Respiratory failure (PaO2 <60 mmHg or need for mechanical ventilation);

■ Confusion or altered mental status;

■ Renal failure (requiring IV treatment or dialysis).


Score interpretation

The MASCC score determines patients at low risk of chemotherapy associated complications based on a cut off at 21 points. Each of the eight items in the score is awarded a number of points. The maximum score is 26.

Depending on the number of points they score, patients are classed in one of the two categories:

■ MASCC ≥21 is indicative of a low risk of febrile neutropenia. The patient can be treated as outpatient with oral antibiotics and there is a 91% chance of positive resolution without complications.

■ MASCC <21 is indicative of a high risk of febrile neutropenia. Patient needs to be admitted in hospital and treated with IV antibiotics. There is a 64% chance of resolution without adverse outcome or complications.


About the study

The MASCC model was created following a prospective multinational study by Klastersky et al. from 2000. Independent factors of febrile neutropenia were assessed (at fever onset) on a derivation cohort of 756 patients, with the aim to develop a risk-index score.

This was subsequently tested on a validation set, where the score showed a positive predictive value of 91%, specificity of 68%, and sensitivity of 71%.

The conclusion was that this scoring system accurately identifies patient at low risk of complications and can help clinicians with malignancy management decisions.


Febrile neutropenia treatment

FN is the febrile complication of myelosuppressive chemotherapy and is considered a medical emergency. In 50% of cases an infection is detectable (neutropenic sepsis) and in 20% of patients, there is bacteremia.

Patients diagnosed with febrile neutropenia are treated with empirical antibiotics (until neutrophil count is recovered) and fever has gone down.

In low-risk cases a combination of oral amoxicillin-clavulanic acid and ciprofloxacin is used, while in more severe cases cephalosporins or carbapenems are recommended.


Original source

Klastersky J, Paesmans M, Rubenstein EB, Boyer M, Elting L, Feld R, Gallagher J, Herrstedt J, Rapoport B, Rolston K, Talcott J. The Multinational Association for Supportive Care in Cancer risk index: A multinational scoring system for identifying low-risk febrile neutropenic cancer patients. J Clin Oncol. 2000; 18(16):3038-51.


Uys A, Rapoport BL, Anderson R. Febrile neutropenia: a prospective study to validate the Multinational Association of Supportive Care of Cancer (MASCC) risk-index score. Support Care Cancer. 2004; 12(8):555-60.

Other references

1. Klastersky J, Paesmans M, Georgala A, Muanza F, Plehiers B, Dubreucq L, Lalami Y, Aoun M, Barette M. Outpatient oral antibiotics for febrile neutropenic cancer patients using a score predictive for complications. J Clin Oncol. 2006;24(25):4129-34.

2. Talcott JA, Finberg R, Mayer RJ, Goldman L. The medical course of cancer patients with fever and neutropenia. Clinical identification of a low-risk subgroup at presentation. Arch Intern Med. 1988; 148(12):2561-8.

3. Freifeld AG, Bow EJ, Sepkowitz KA, Boeckh MJ, Ito JI, Mullen CA, Raad II, Rolston KV, Young JA, Wingard JR; Infectious Diseases Society of America. Clinical practice guideline for the use of antimicrobial agents in neutropenic patients with cancer: 2010 update by the infectious diseases society of America. Clin Infect Dis. 2011; 52(4):e56-93.

4. Carmona-Bayonas A, Gómez J, González-Billalabeitia E, Canteras M, Navarrete A, Gonzálvez ML, Vicente V, Ayala de la Peña F. Prognostic evaluation of febrile neutropenia in apparently stable adult cancer patients. Br J Cancer. 2011; 105(5):612-7.

Specialty: Oncology

Objective: Risk Predictor

Type: Score

No. Of Items: 8

Year Of Study: 2000

Abbreviation: MASCC

Article By: Denise Nedea

Published On: June 6, 2017

Last Checked: June 6, 2017

Next Review: June 6, 2023