Ward, E., Smith, M., Henderson, M., Reid, U., Lewis, I., Kinsey, S., et al. (2009). The effect of high-dose enteral glutamine on the incidence and severity of mucositis in paediatric oncology patients. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 63(1), 134-140.doi: 10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602894
To determine if 0.65 g/kg enteral glutamine daily for 7 days is effective in reducing the incidence and severity of mucositis in pediatric oncology patients when given with chemotherapy
Patients received one course of chemotherapy with glutamine and an identical course without. Alternate patients were given glutamine with course 1 or with course 2.
The study was conducted at a single site at Yorkshire Regional Centre for Pediatric Oncology and Hematology in the United Kingdom.
Patients were undergoing the active treatment phase of care.
This was a randomized study using the patients as their own controls.
No difference was found between the five symptoms or for the total number of children with each symptom.
Oral glutamine did not improve the nutritional status of patients in the study. Even though subjective toxicity scores showed more problems if glutamine was not used, because of the small sample size, the difference was not significant. In addition, 62% took glutamine via enteral feeding tube, therefore eliminating the local effect on the oral mucosa.
Further study into what factors resulted in the decreased use of TPN could be of benefit. Further studies are needed to investigate the use of oral glutamine using larger and more diverse populations.