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Volume 22, Number 6, 2017

Intraoral stents in preventing adverse radiotherapeutic effects in lip cancer patients

Breno A. Rocha, Lucianne M.C. Lima, Lívia M.R. Paranaíba, Angel da S. Martinez, ... Mário R. de Melo Filho



To fabricate and evaluate the efficacy of individualized intraoral stents to minimize the potential side effects of radiation on oral tissues in patients with early stages of lip cancer.


Lower lip cancer is a common tumor found almost exclusively in middle-aged and elderly males. Surgery is the most common treatment of choice, although for less extensive lesions, exclusive radiotherapy may be preferred. Some studies have found that the use of intraoral stents in patients with intraoral cancer (e.g., of the tongue or floor of the mouth) obtained favorable results in preventing unnecessary radiation doses to adjacent normal tissue and reducing oral complications. However, studies investigating the efficacy of individualized intraoral stents in patients with lip cancer have not been reported in the literature.

Materials and methods

Six patients with early stage lip cancer were eligible for curative radiotherapy and personalized intraoral stents. The stents were fabricated and all participants were evaluated for the occurrence of oral complications.


The regions of the oral mucosa protected from radiation by intraoral stents showed no mucositis. One patient complained of mild oral dryness but without interference in habits. At follow-up, none of the patients had late xerostomia or signs of dental caries by radiation.


The use of individualized intraoral stents was shown to be promising in reducing the adverse effects of radiation therapy in lip cancer patients. These findings highlight the importance of a multidisciplinary team during oncological therapy.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2017; 22(6) : 450-454

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