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You are going to receive chemotherapy. What should you do?

Role of chemotherapy and radiotherapy in current cancer treatment.

In the last two decades the prognosis of the different forms of cancer has improved enormously, making survival rates very high. Cancer is today, in most cases, a disease that can be cured.

In addition to improved diagnostic techniques that allow early detection and modern surgical procedures, radio and chemotherapy play a decisive role in these improvements. As a result, they have become routine procedures for the treatment of oral cancer.

The rationale for its use is to stop the selective growth of tumor cells that have a higher rate of development than other cells in the body.

Effects on the oral cavity.

The cells of the lining or mucosa of the oral cavity and intestine are among those with the highest and intestine are among the most capable of renewal, similar to cancer cells, and are therefore particularly affected by chemo- and radiotherapy treatments. They are characterized by
redness, irritation and stinging sensation in the mouth and
of the mouth and even
pain when swallowing
.

Chemotherapy produces an immunosuppression that reduces our ability to cope with infectious agents in the oral cavity, often resulting in the appearance of
opportunistic fungal and bacterial infections
. It is also common for periodontal disease to be aggravated
periodontal disease
pre-existing periodontal disease.

The
salivary glands
are also frequently affected, producing a reduction in the amount of saliva. You have
dry mouth sensation
.

More frequently in cases of radiotherapy, the following may occur
nervous alterations
of the face with
sensations of pain, tingling and alteration of the sense of taste.
.

Infectious alterations of the
infectious alterations of the bones of the jaws, known as osteoradionecrosis
known as osteoradionecrosis, which can be serious.

What should I do if I am going to receive radiation or chemotherapy?

See your dentist before starting treatment. The existence of caries, gingivitis or periodontitis and any bone lesions susceptible to aggravation during cancer treatment should be diagnosed.

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