Goals The commercially available saliva substitute Oralbalance (R) has been reported to alleviate symptoms of post-radiotherapy xerostomia in head and neck cancer patients. Oralbalance (R) may also be effective for xerostomia in patients undergoing hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) with high-dose chemotherapy and total-body irradiation. However, HCT patients are severely compromised, and saliva substitute must therefore not promote infection. This study was performed to determine the effects of Oralbalance (R) on microbial species identified during HCT. Patients and methods Microbial identification of oral mucosa was performed in 28 patients undergoing HCT. The antimicrobial effects of Oralbalance (R) against bacteria and fungi detected in the HCT period were examined in vitro. Briefly, bacteria and fungi were spread on agar plates, and 0.1g of Oralbalance (R) gel was applied (about phi 1cm). After incubation at 37 degrees C for 24h, the presence of a transparent zone of inhibition around Oralbalance (R) was observed. Main results Not only bacterial species constituting normal flora of the oral mucosa but also those not usually constituting normal flora, e.g., coagulase-negative Staphylococcus, were detected. A transparent zone was observed around Oralbalance (R) in all bacterial species examined. No transparent zone was observed for Candida albicans, but growth was inhibited in the area where Oralbalance (R) was applied. Conclusions Oralbalance (R) does not facilitate increases in microorganisms in the HCT period. Oral care with Oralbalance (R) does not promote infection in patients undergoing HCT.
Hematopoietic cell transplantation
Supportive Care in Cancer
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