Published online Nov 20, 2013. doi: 10.5321/wjs.v2.i4.71
Revised: July 31, 2013
Accepted: August 5, 2013
Published online: November 20, 2013
Treatment of head and neck cancer with radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy can cause oral damage. Long-term treatment can damage the salivary glands, the oral mucosa, and the maxilla, leading to altered production of saliva and to multiple infections. These lesions can be prevented, limited or avoided by thorough evaluation prior to treatment and by therapeutic follow-up and preventive measures. The dentist must have strong medical knowledge of the possible short-, medium-, and long-term oral complications of the cancer treatment, and must have knowledge of the protocols for oral management of cancer patients. The availability of a multidisciplinary medical team together with a dentist to attend to the patient prior to the cancer treatment, as well as close communication between team members during and after treatment, is crucial. The aim of the present study was review the stomatological management of head and neck cancer patients treated with chemotherapy and radiotherapy and summarizing current treatments, therapeutic innovation and tissue regeneration perspectives.
Core tip: The aim of the present study was to conduct a review of therapeutic advances in the prevention and management of oral disorders in head and neck cancer patients receiving radio- and chemotherapy. The study focuses on possible risk factors and on the prevention of these disorders.