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Volume 24, Number 4, 2019

Patients’ view of the differences in topical creams for radiation dermatitis prevention. A pilot study of cosmetic properties

Sebastia Sabater, Rafael Leon, Cesar Esteban, Jose Luis Añon, Meritxell Arenas


Aim To investigate the feasibility of including patients’ reports on the cosmetic properties of topical formulations for acute radiation dermatitis (ARD). Background No topical agent tested for acute radiation dermatitis (ARD) has proven to be better than any other, all achieving similar objective outcomes. No clear guidelines have therefore been established in clinics. Because the vehicle for such creams has shown to be an important factor in patient adherence to treatments in other dermatological diseases, patients’ opinions are evaluated. Material and methods Seventy breast cancer patients referred for postoperative radiotherapy after conservative surgery were enrolled. Patients were assigned to use one of the 7 topical agents that are most-commonly used in the prevention of ARD. Patients’ reports were assessed using continuous visual analogue scales (VAS), objective signs and symptoms produced by ARD, and were rated using the RTOG and RISRAS scales. Results The creams tested differed in their cosmetic properties significantly (p = 0.044). The performance of the agent, their absorption and any residue left over were also significantly different (p = 0.022, 0.014 and 0.02, respectively). Conclusions Topical agents for preventive ARD are reported by patients to show different cosmetic properties. Cosmetic properties are important when choosing topical agents for ARD prevention. Recommending those with better cosmetic profiles would improve patient adherence to treatments.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2019; 24(4) : 347-354

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