Purpose: Hematology–oncology patients undergoing chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) recipients are at risk for oral complications which may cause significant morbidity and a potential risk of mortality. This emphasizes the importance of basic oral care prior to, during and following chemotherapy/HSCT. While scientific evidence is available to support some of the clinical practices used to manage the oral complications, expert opinion is needed to shape the current optimal protocols.
Methods: This position paper was developed by members of the Oral Care Study Group, Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer/International Society of Oral Oncology (MASCC/ISOO) and the European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) in attempt to provide guidance to the health care providers managing these patient populations.
Results: The protocol on basic oral care outlined in this position paper is presented based on the following principles: prevention of infections, pain control, maintaining oral function, the interplay with managing oral complications of cancer treatment and improving quality of life.
Conclusion: Using these fundamental elements, we developed a protocol to assist the health care provider and present a practical approach for basic oral care. Research is warranted to provide robust scientific evidence and to enhance this clinical protocol.
- Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation