Vidal-Casariego, A., Calleja-Fernandez, A., Ballesteros-Pomar, M. D., & Cano-Rodriguez, I. (2013). Efficacy of glutamine in the prevention of oral mucositis and acute radiation-induced esophagitis: a retrospective study. Nutrition and Cancer, 65, 424-429.doi: 10.1080/01635581.2013.765017
To evaluate the effect of oral glutamine on the prevalence and severity of acute radiation-induced oral and esophageal mucositis
Data were collected retrospectively for patients receiving radiation therapy. Findings were compared between those who did and did not receive glutamine. Outcomes between those who were given glutamine early (prior to radiation therapy) versus late (after radiation therapy was begun) in the course of radiation therapy were compared. Data on nutritional status and interruptions in treatment were evaluated.
The study was conducted at a single site outpatient setting in Spain.
Patients were undergoing the active antitumor treatment phase of care.
This was a retrospective study.
The World Health Oragnization (WHO) mucositis grading scale was used.
Provision of oral glutamine prior to the beginning radiation therapy may be of benefit in the prevention of oral mucositis. Firm conclusions cannot be made because of multiple study limitations.
This study has numerous limitations and risks of bias, and it attempted to draw conclusions across a very heterogenous population of patients. Findings suggest that oral glutamine may be helpful in preventing oral mucositis in patients receiving radiation to the head and neck area, and it appears that glutamine treatment may be most beneficial if treatment is begun prior to the initiation of radiation therapy.