Laser phototherapy as topical prophylaxis against head and neck cancer radiotherapy-induced oral mucositis: Comparison between low and high/low power lasers
Article first published online: 3 APR 2009
Copyright © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Lasers in Surgery and Medicine
Volume 41, Issue 4, pages 264–270, April 2009
How to Cite
Simões, A., Eduardo, F. P., Luiz, A. C., Campos, L., Sá, P. H. R.N., Cristófaro, M., Marques, M. M. and Eduardo, C. P. (2009), Laser phototherapy as topical prophylaxis against head and neck cancer radiotherapy-induced oral mucositis: Comparison between low and high/low power lasers. Lasers Surg. Med., 41: 264–270. doi: 10.1002/lsm.20758
- Issue published online: 3 APR 2009
- Article first published online: 3 APR 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 4 FEB 2009
- FAPESP (The State of São Paulo Research Foundation). Grant Number: 57578-8/2005
- CNPq (The National Council of Scientific and Technological Development). Grant Number: 552210/2005
- head and neck radiotherapy;
- oral pain;
- wound healing
Background and Objective
Oral mucositis is a dose-limiting and painful side effect of radiotherapy (RT) and/or chemotherapy in cancer patients. The purpose of the present study was to analyze the effect of different protocols of laser phototherapy (LPT) on the grade of mucositis and degree of pain in patients under RT.
Patients and Methods
Thirty-nine patients were divided into three groups: G1, where the irradiations were done three times a week using low power laser; G2, where combined high and low power lasers were used three time a week; and G3, where patients received low power laser irradiation once a week. The low power LPT was done using an InGaAlP laser (660 nm/40 mW/6 J cm−2/0.24 J per point). In the combined protocol, the high power LPT was done using a GaAlAs laser (808 nm, 1 W/cm2). Oral mucositis was assessed at each LPT session in accordance to the oral-mucositis scale of the National Institute of the Cancer—Common Toxicity criteria (NIC-CTC). The patient self-assessed pain was measured by means of the visual analogue scale.
All protocols of LPT led to the maintenance of oral mucositis scores in the same levels until the last RT session. Moreover, LPT three times a week also maintained the pain levels. However, the patients submitted to the once a week LPT had significant pain increase; and the association of low/high LPT led to increased healing time.
These findings are desired when dealing with oncologic patients under RT avoiding unplanned radiation treatment breaks and additional hospital costs. Lasers Surg. Med. 41:264–270, 2009. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.