Aug 21, 2011 - 7:08 am
Laser Therapy Reduces Oral Mucositis in Head and Neck Cancer
The use of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) may reduce the incidence and severity of oral mucositis caused by chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy among patients with head and neck cancer. These results were presented at the 2011 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
Treatment for head and neck cancer typically includes radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy. A common side effect of treatment for head and neck cancer is oral mucositis (OM), which is the irritation and inflammation of the lining of the mouth. Mucositis is associated with pain (which can interfere with eating and swallowing) and can lead to infection. If mucositis becomes severe, treatment may be delayed or doses reduced, which may lead to suboptimal outcomes from therapy.