Prophylactic photobiomodulation therapy using 660 nm diode laser for oral mucositis in paediatric patients under chemotherapy: 5-year experience from a Brazilian referral service


The use of photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT) in the prevention of oral mucositis (OM) in paediatric care has increased. In this article, we report data of paediatric oncology/haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) patients treated with PBMT to prevent chemotherapy-induced OM. A retrospective study was conducted at a Brazilian referral service. Prophylactic PBMT was used in children and adolescents (≤ 17 years) following the protocol: InGaAIP, 660 nm, 100 mW, 2 J, 3.33 W/cm2, and 20 s per point. Demographic data and OM severity scores were assessed. A regression model tested the association between OM with prophylactic PBMT and antineoplastic therapy. A total of 148 individuals who had undergone 358 chemotherapy cycles were analysed. A higher occurrence of OM was observed in HSCT and osteosarcoma (OS) patients. Except for HSCT, OM was associated with methotrexate (MTX) use in all disease groups. PBMT significantly reduced OM severity in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) and OS patients. OM grade was 3.16 and 5.45 times higher among individuals with ALL and OS, who had not undergone prophylactic PBMT compared with those who had undergone prophylactic PBMT (p < 0.001). PBMT prevented chemotherapy-induced OM. Individuals who used MTX and did not undergo prophylactic PBMT were at increased risk of OM.

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We would like to thank the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) for the financial support. TAS, LGA and RAM are research fellows of CNPq. Mrs E. Greene revised the English text.


This study was supported by Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES, Finance Code 001), Brazil. L.F.M.N. and J.A.A.A. are recipients of postgraduate fellowships.

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Correspondence to Tarcília Aparecida Silva.

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The study was approved by the Ethics Committee of Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (No. 69069917.5.0000.5149).

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Nunes, L.F.M., de Arruda, J.A.A., Souza, A.F. et al. Prophylactic photobiomodulation therapy using 660 nm diode laser for oral mucositis in paediatric patients under chemotherapy: 5-year experience from a Brazilian referral service. Lasers Med Sci (2020).

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  • Cancer
  • Chemotherapy
  • Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation
  • Methotrexate
  • Oral mucositis
  • Paediatric oncology