Oral Medicine| Volume 90, ISSUE 1, P39-47, July 2000

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Randomized clinical trial of the effectiveness of 3 commonly used mouthwashes to treat chemotherapy-induced mucositis


      Objective: To test the effectiveness of 3 mouthwashes used to treat chemotherapy-induced mucositis. The mouthwashes were as follows: salt and soda, chlorhexidine, and “magic” mouthwash (lidocaine, Benadryl, and Maalox). Study Design: A randomized, double-blind clinical trial was implemented in 23 outpatient and office settings. Participants were monitored from the time they developed mucositis until cessation of the signs and symptoms of mucositis, or until they finished their 12-day supply of mouthwash. All participants followed a prescribed oral hygiene program and were randomly assigned a mouthwash. Nurses used the Oral Assessment Guide for initial assessment and taught patients how to assess their own mouths, then phoned the patients every other day to gather status reports. Results: In 142 of 200 patients, there was a cessation of the signs and symptoms of mucositis within 12 days. No significant differences in time for the cessation of the signs and symptoms were observed among the 3 groups. Conclusions: Given the comparable effectiveness of the mouthwashes, the least costly was salt and soda mouthwash. (Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod 2000;90:39-47)
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