Hong Kong Med J 2000;6:203-8 | Number 2, June 2000
Oral care for children with leukaemia
SY Cho, AC Cheng, MCK Cheng
Tuen Mun School Dental Clinic, Department of Health, 16 Tsun Wen Road, Tuen Mun, Hong Kong
OBJECTIVES. To review the oral care regimens for children with acute leukaemia, and to present an easy-to-follow oral care protocol for those affected children.
DATA SOURCES. Medline and non-Medline search of the literature; local data; and personal experience.
STUDY SELECTION. Articles containing supportive scientific evidence were selected.
DATA EXTRACTION. Data were extracted and reviewed independently by the authors.
DATA SYNTHESIS. Cancer is an uncommon disease in children, yet it is second only to accidents as a cause of death for children in many countries. Acute leukaemia is the most common type of malignancy encountered in children. The disease and its treatment can directly or indirectly affect the child's oral health and dental development. Any existing lesions that might have normally been dormant can also flare up and become life-threatening once the child is immunosuppressed. Proper oral care before, during, and after cancer therapy has been found to be effective in preventing and controlling such oral complications.
CONCLUSION. Proper oral care for children with leukaemia is critical. Long-term follow-up of these children is also necessary to monitor their dental and orofacial growth.
Key words: Child; Leukemia/therapy; Mouthwashes; Oral hygiene/methods
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