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Indian J Palliat Care. 2017 Jul-Sep;23(3):317-320. doi: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_146_16.

The Effect of Honey on Radiation-induced Oral Mucositis in Head and Neck Cancer Patients.

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Department of Oral Biology, de' Montmorency College of Dentistry, Lahore, Pakistan.
Department of Oncology and Radiology, Mayo Hospital, Lahore, Pakistan.
Children Hospital, Lahore, Pakistan.



The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of honey on clinically scoring grades of oral mucositis.


This interventional study was carried out in Radiation Oncology Department of Mayo Hospital, Lahore. In this study, 82 patients of both genders, of head and neck cancer, planned for radiotherapy, were divided into two groups by random sampling numbers. Patients in both groups were treated with a total dose of 60-78 Grays in 4-6 weeks. In treatment group, patients were instructed to take 20 mL of honey. In control group, they were advised to rinse with 0.9% of saline. Patients were evaluated every week to assess the grades of oral mucositis up to 6 weeks. The assessment tool was Radiation Therapy Oncology Group Grading System. The statistical analysis was done by Chi-square test.


In honey-treated group, the proportion of mucositis (Grades 3 and 4) was lower and statistically significant as compared to control group at the end of 6 weeks of radiation.


This study showed that oral intake of honey during radiotherapy is valuable in the reduction of severity of oral mucositis.


Honey; Radiation Therapy Oncology Group; oral mucositis; radiotherapy

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