Objective: This prospective randomized Phase II study was designed to evaluate the preventive effect of an oral nutrition supplement composed of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate, arginine and glutamine (beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate/arginine/glutamine) on radiation dermatitis in head and neck cancer patients. Methods: Forty patients with histologically proven head and neck cancer, treated with concurrent chemoradiotherapy involving cisplatin were recruited. They were randomly assigned to the beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate/arginine/glutamine supplement treatment group (Group A) or the control group that received no supplement (Group B). The primary endpoint of this study was the percentage of patients developing ≥Grade 3 dermatitis. The secondary endpoints were the percentage of patients developing ≥Grade 2 dermatitis, and the duration of each grade of dermatitis relative to the observation period. Results: The incidence of ≥Grade 3 dermatitis did not differ between the two groups. However, as secondary endpoints of this study, the incidence of ≥Grade 2 dermatitis was lower in Group A than B (62.6 vs. 94.4%; P < 0.05), and the duration of ≥Grade 1 dermatitis was shorter in Group A than B (44.8 vs. 56.7%; P < 0.01), as was the duration of ≥Grade 2 dermatitis (16.5 vs. 26.5%; P < 0.05). Conclusions: Our study indicated that beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate/arginine/glutamine supplementation was potentially effective in the prevention of radiation dermatitis in head and neck cancer patients.
- Head and neck cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cancer Research