Is a barrier cream more effective than a moisturiser in preventing moist desquamation in patients receiving radiation treatment for breast cancer? Results of a randomised controlled trial

Laffin, Nadine, Smyth, Wendy, Heyer, Elizabeth, Gardner, Anne, Abernethy, Gail, and Fasugba, Oyebola (2013) Is a barrier cream more effective than a moisturiser in preventing moist desquamation in patients receiving radiation treatment for breast cancer? Results of a randomised controlled trial. Annals of the Australasian College of Tropical Medicine, 14 (1). pp. 16-17.

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Abstract

Background/Aims: Patients receiving radiation for breast cancer potentially develop severe radiation dermatitis, most frequently manifested as moist desquamation. Internationally, there is inconsistency about what products patients are advised to use to prevent this. Additionally, there is no literature about skin care products and the development of moist desquamation in tropical climates. The aim of this study is to compare the effectiveness of two creams at minimising the incidence of moist desquamation in a tropical setting.

Methods: A nurse-led randomised controlled trial recruited participants from the Townsville Radiation Therapy Unit between June 2010 and July 2012 (N=255). Participants were stratified according to breast or chest wall radiation treatment areas and randomly allocated to use a moisturising or barrier cream. Nursing staff scored radiation dermatitis weekly by using a standardised grading system, and patients were phoned one month after completing treatment for a final skin assessment.

Results: At treatment completion, 15% of participants had moist desquamation. An additional 22% self-reported this at one-month follow up. Risk factors for moist desquamation included increased breast size and body mass index. The barrier cream significantly reduced the incidence of moist desquamation in patients receiving radiation to the chest wall but not in patients receiving radiation to the breast treatment area.

Conclusion: The incidence of moist desquamation following radiation treatment has important implications for radiation oncology nurses' clinical practice. These findings highlight the need for structured discharge planning and education incorporating identified risk factors. Patients undergoing radiation treatment to the chest wall may benefit from using a barrier cream.

Item ID: 30870
Item Type: Article (Abstract)
ISSN: 1448-4706
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2014 02:35
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1110 Nursing > 111003 Clinical Nursing: Secondary (Acute Care) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9299 Other Health > 929999 Health not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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