Drugs & Aging

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 257–267 | Cite as

Chemotherapy-Induced Oral Mucositis

Prevention and Management
  • Jennifer J. Knox
  • Anitasha L. V. Puodziunas
  • Ronald Feld
Disease Management

Abstract

Oral mucositis is a frequent and potentially severe complication of chemotherapy which has a considerable impact on patient quality of life. While the management of other chemotherapy-related toxicities has improved, the incidence of mucositis is increasing. A critical review of the literature published between 1985 and 1999 reveals very few strategies or agents with proven efficacy, leaving few recommendations for the standard care in the prevention and treatment of mucositis at this time. Recommendations that can be made include: reducing patient risk factors, implementing proven preventative interventions such as utilising oral ice chips with fluorouracil chemotherapy, and optimising supportive care practices individualised to the patients’ needs and symptoms. Progress in understanding the pathophysiology of mucositis at the molecular level has led to the evaluation of a number of new investigational agents, specifically those directed to the epithelial mucosa, such as mitogens and epithelial growth factors. These appear to be very promising in preclinical studies. Randomised clinical trials with these agents may finally demonstrate an impact on the clinical practice of mucositis management in the coming years.

Keywords

Betacarotene Misoprostol Oral Mucositis Tretinoin Keratinocyte Growth Factor 

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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jennifer J. Knox
    • 1
  • Anitasha L. V. Puodziunas
    • 2
  • Ronald Feld
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Medical OncologyPrincess Margaret Hospital/University Health NetworkTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Department of PharmacyPrincess Margaret Hospital/University Health NetworkTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Department of MedicineUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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