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Effect of radiation on oropharyngeal flora in patients of head and neck cancer


In the present study 124 cases of head and neck cancers subjected to radiation therapy were studied and the change in oropharyngeal flora with the radiation therapy noted. 50 cases for comparison with no ENT complaints were taken control. The oropharyngeal flora in the control cases was established as the normal flora. Any other floral constituent was considered to be abnormal oropharyngeal flora. It was found that with radiation there was a statistically significant increase in several constituents of normal as well as abnormal oropharyngeal flora. This increase could be the predisposing factor for post radiation infections especially in post operative patients. Oropharyngeal swabs were sent before, during and after radiation therapy for detailed bacterial and mycotic flora smear and culture examinations.

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Correspondence to Rohit Mehrotra or S. P. Agarwal or G. K. Shukla or M. Srivastava or M. Singh or N. Bhatia.

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Mehrotra, R., Agarwal, S.P., Shukla, G.K. et al. Effect of radiation on oropharyngeal flora in patients of head and neck cancer. IJO & HNS 49, 344–349 (1997).

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  • Neck Cancer
  • Neck Cancer Patient
  • Follow Radiation Therapy
  • Streptococcus Viridans
  • Oropharyngeal Swab