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ORIGINAL ARTICLE  INFECTIOUS DISEASES AND CHEMOTHERAPY CONSEQUENCES: AN INVESTIGATION TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE IN PATIENTS 

Gazzetta Medica Italiana Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2018 October;177(10):518-26

DOI: 10.23736/S0393-3660.18.03811-1

Copyright © 2018 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

Dysgeusia in women undergoing cancer chemotherapy: results of a preliminary observational study

Assunta GUILLARI 1, 2, Maria R. ESPOSITO 2, 3, Silvio SIMEONE 1, Grazia TESSITORE 4, Aniello LANZUISE 4, Gianpaolo GARGIULO 1, Cesira CORATELLA 5, Francesco SCARLATA 6, Nicola SERRA 7, Teresa REA 1

1 Department of Public Health, Federico II University, Naples, Italy; 2 Department of Biomedicine and Prevention, Tor Vergata University, Rome, Italy; 3 G. Pascale Foundation and Institute for Cancer Research and Care, Naples, Italy; 4 S. Maria della Pietà Camilliani Hospital, Naples, Italy; 5 San Camillo Forlanini Hospital, Rome, Italy; 6 Health Promotion and Child Health, Palermo University Hospital, Palermo, Italy; 7 Department of Pediatrics, Federico II University, Naples, Italy


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BACKGROUND: Taste alterations are an underestimated side effect of chemoradiotherapy even though they affect 75% of patients that undergo that form of treatment. This can cause discomfort and food aversions, resulting in the loss of appetite and anorexia with a major impact on the quality of life (QoL) of patients both during and after treatment. A review of the literature shows that the evaluations conducted to investigate the presence of dysgeusia feature the critical nature of this side effect; therefore, it is necessary to evaluate this disorder with the aim of reducing the symptoms that it produces in cancer patients and improve their QoL.
METHODS: A multicenter study was conducted on a sample of 92 women receiving chemotherapy via a systemic route in an outpatient setting. Through a semi-structured interview, a socio-demographic tab was created ad hoc, and a Chemotherapy-induced Taste Alteration Scale (CiTAS) was used to selectively identify taste alterations. CiTAS is a scale of 18 items that can help identify specific taste alterations and symptoms of discomfort as well as their impact on nutrition.
RESULTS: By data analysis, it was found that in women undergone chemotherapy, phantogeusia and parageusia were the more presents in comparison to others CiTAS classes. Particularly in these women, we observed a significantly strong presence of patients with low valued of lack of salivation, Nausea and Reduced appetite. Moreover, a significant correlation was found between CiTAS classes and some parameters considered in this study, such as education level, age, and chewing problems. All CiTAS classes were negatively correlated with lack of salivation and reduced appetite.
CONCLUSIONS: The possibility to individualize parameters connected to taste alteration represent an important step to improvement the QoL of the women undergoing chemotherapy treatments. The present study strongly detected the presence of dysgeusia, particularly understood as a real distortion of taste sensation (phantogeusia and parageusia). To know these alterations can lead to the provision of personalized treatments.


KEY WORDS: Taste disorders - Neoplasms - Women - Nutrition - Chemotherapy effect - CiTAS scale

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