Oral complications in Chinese cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy

Carmen W.H. Chan, Anne M. Chang, Alexandros Molasiotis, Idy Y.M. Lee, Gladys C.T. Lee

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


In this study the oral status and mucositis-related symptoms in 94 Chinese cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy for with curative intent were examined. Data were collected by a research nurse at three stages over a period of 16 days: at the start, on day 8, and on day 16 of chemotherapy. The majority of subjects experienced a mild to moderate degree of mucositis with the highest score reported on day 8. Patients with head and neck cancer had consistently higher scores for mucositis and symptoms in most phases. Oral mucositis and symptoms were significantly and positively correlated with consumption of spicy and/or hot (temperature) food, and frequency of use of mouthwashes. Significantly higher scores were found in patients who: ate hot (temperature) food, had low tolerance for hot food and spicy foods, and were taking Chinese medicinal herbs. Careful monitoring of patient diet preferences, cancer site, and use of Chinese medicine is recommended for comprehensive oral assessment. The alleviation of oral mucositis and the associated symptoms through promotion of an appropriate food/fluid intake and more frequent use of mouthwashes should be emphasized in oral care.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-55
Number of pages8
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemotherapy
  • Chinese patients
  • Mucositis
  • Oral symptoms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


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