The efficacy of an ayurvedic preparation of yashtimadhu (Glycyrrhiza glabra) on radiation-induced mucositis in head-and-neck cancer patients: A pilot study
Background: Oral mucositis is a common and debilitating painful side effect of many forms of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Mucositis may lead to dose reductions and unplanned interruptions of chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy (RT) and often affects patients’ quality of life.
Aim: The objective of the study was to assess the efficacy of the ayurvedic preparation in decreasing the severity of mucositis in head-and-neck cancer patients receiving concomitant chemoradiotherapy.
Materials and Methods: In this prospective randomized study, the patients were divided into three groups. Group 1 patients received conventional mucositis treatment, whereas Group 2 patients received ayurvedic preparation Yashtimadhu in addition to conventional treatment. Group 3 patients received honey for local application in oral cavity as well as one tea spoon of honey twice daily orally in addition to routine conventional treatment. All the patients were assessed for mucositis at the end of every week during the RT for a period of 6 weeks.
Results: A significant difference was observed between the groups at each time point. Nearly 42.85% of patients in conventional treatment arm developed Grade 3 mucositis, 20% of patients developed Grade 3 mucositis in group where honey was given, and only 15.5% of patients developed Grade 3 mucositis in Yastimadhu group. Unplanned treatment breaks and hospitalization of patients were reduced with the use of yashtimadhu as compared to other two groups.
Conclusion: Yashtimadhu was observed to be effective and delayed the development of severe form of mucositis. The drug appeared to be more efficient in the management of radiation-induced mucositis.
Keywords: Chemoradiation, honey, mucositis, yashtimadhu