Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) for nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC) allowed a better distribution of the dose to the tumor volume, sparing surrounding structures. Aim of the study is the objective evaluation of olfactory and gustatory impairments in patients who underwent chemo-radiotherapy for NPC. Correlation between smell and taste alterations, xerostomy, and radiation technique was investigated. Thirty healthy subjects and 30 patients treated with chemo-radiation therapy for NPC, with at least a 2-years follow-up period, were evaluated. All subjects underwent symptoms evaluation, endoscopic fiber optic nasal examination, taste strips, Sniffin' sticks tests, Radiation Therapy Oncology Group/European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer late radiation morbidity scoring system. Patients were divided in 2 groups: 2-dimensional radiotherapy/conformal 3-dimensional radiotherapy and IMRT. A higher percentage of rhinorrhea, nasal obstruction, xerostomy, hyposmia, hypogeusia, mucosal hyperemia, and presence of nasopharyngeal secretions was found in irradiated subjects (P < 0.05). Concerning olfactory and gustatory scores, we demonstrated a statistically significant difference between healthy subjects and irradiated patients (P < 0.05), with lower gustatory total score in IMRT group (P < 0.01). In conclusion, chemo-radiotherapy for NPC induces long-term smell and taste impairments, which can compromise quality of life. Although based on small samples, it is also important to consider that IMRT can induce higher taste dysfunction compared with traditional techniques.

Late sensorial alterations in different radiotherapy techniques for nasopharyngeal cancer

RIVA, GIUSEPPE;RAIMONDO, Luca;RAVERA, MATTIA;MORETTO, FRANCESCO;BOITA, MONICA;POTENZA, ILENIA;RICARDI, Umberto;GARZARO, Massimiliano
2015

Abstract

Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) for nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC) allowed a better distribution of the dose to the tumor volume, sparing surrounding structures. Aim of the study is the objective evaluation of olfactory and gustatory impairments in patients who underwent chemo-radiotherapy for NPC. Correlation between smell and taste alterations, xerostomy, and radiation technique was investigated. Thirty healthy subjects and 30 patients treated with chemo-radiation therapy for NPC, with at least a 2-years follow-up period, were evaluated. All subjects underwent symptoms evaluation, endoscopic fiber optic nasal examination, taste strips, Sniffin' sticks tests, Radiation Therapy Oncology Group/European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer late radiation morbidity scoring system. Patients were divided in 2 groups: 2-dimensional radiotherapy/conformal 3-dimensional radiotherapy and IMRT. A higher percentage of rhinorrhea, nasal obstruction, xerostomy, hyposmia, hypogeusia, mucosal hyperemia, and presence of nasopharyngeal secretions was found in irradiated subjects (P < 0.05). Concerning olfactory and gustatory scores, we demonstrated a statistically significant difference between healthy subjects and irradiated patients (P < 0.05), with lower gustatory total score in IMRT group (P < 0.01). In conclusion, chemo-radiotherapy for NPC induces long-term smell and taste impairments, which can compromise quality of life. Although based on small samples, it is also important to consider that IMRT can induce higher taste dysfunction compared with traditional techniques.
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Sniffin’ sticks; intensity-modulated radiation therapy; nasopharyngeal cancer; radiotherapy; smell; taste
Riva, Giuseppe; Raimondo, Luca; Ravera, Mattia; Moretto, Francesco; Boita, Monica; Potenza, Ilenia; Rampino, Monica; Ricardi, Umberto; Garzaro, Massimiliano
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1520977
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