Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)-Induced mucositis pain in oropharyngeal cancers

Yusuke Okanoue, Kazuhiko Shoji, Ryusuke Hori, Shintaro Fujimura, Hitomi Wakizaka, Mami Morita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Radiation therapy in patients with head and neck cancers often triggers severe painful mucositis. Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) allows higher radiation doses to be focused on regions within the tumor while minimizing the dose to surrounding normal critical structures. Recently IMRT has been used for the purpose of reduction of side effects. To better understand how IMRT is associated with fewer episodes of painful mucositis than conventional RT, we investigated examples of painful mucositis from 27 patients (IMRT group; 13 patients, conventional RT group; 14 patients) undergoing radiation therapy at 60-66 Gy for newly diagnosed nasopharyngeal cancer. We evaluated painful mucositis using numerical rating scale (NRSO-5) pain scores and Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events version 3. 0 (CTCAE v3. 0). We also investigated analgesic usage and the rate of receiving naso-gastric tube feeding. The area of mucositis was smaller and the pain course was milder in the IMRT group compared with the conventional RT group.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)759-766
Number of pages8
JournalPractica Oto-Rhino-Laryngologica
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 08-2012
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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