Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Some children facing bone marrow transplant risk

31.08.2005


St. Jude researchers say dental problems caused by radiation, chemotherapy should be treated before a child undergoes immunosuppression as part of bone marrow transplantation therapy



Many children who undergo bone marrow transplantation (BMT) as part of cancer treatment already have dental abnormalities that leave them vulnerable to potentially life-threatening bacterial infections, according to investigators at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. A report on this study appears in the prepublication online edition of Bone Marrow Transplantation.

The investigators found that the most common dental problem in children about to undergo BMT was tooth decay, often resulting from neglected oral hygiene and poor nutrition. Tooth decay is especially dangerous in children undergoing BMTs because physicians must first suppress their immune systems to reduce the chance of transplant rejection. Therefore, children about to undergo immunosuppression as part of BMTs should have dental checkups, said Sue C. Kaste, D.O., a member of St. Jude Radiological Sciences. "It’s important to make sure they do not have cavities that could act as doorways to the bloodstream for disease-causing bacteria," she said.


The St. Jude investigators made their findings during a retrospective study of the medical records and X-rays of the entire set of teeth in 259 children (age range 3.2 to 25.9 years) who underwent BMT. The most common diagnosis among these children was leukemia (63 percent); while the other children were found to have solid tumors (14 percent), anemia (8 percent), or brain tumors (3 percent). In addition, one child had retinoblastoma (eye cancer) and one had severe combined immunodeficiency. One hundred fifty of these patients were male, 203 were Caucasians and 38 were African-American.

The St. Jude team found that, before BMT, 150 (57.9 percent) of the 259 patients had dental abnormalities. Among patients who still had their "first" teeth before BMT, 36.4 percent had dental abnormalities; among patients with permanent teeth, 66.7 percent had dental abnormalities; and among patients with both first and permanent teeth, 52.3 percent had abnormalities. There was no difference in frequency of abnormalities in permanent teeth between males (65.5 percent) and females (67.5 percent), nor was there a difference between Caucasians (69 percent) and African-Americans (70 percent).

The most common dental abnormality identified in the study was caries (tooth decay), which was seen in 133 (51 percent) patients. Among other dental problems were abnormal clumps of enamel on the tooth and calcification (hardening) of the tooth pulp (the soft inner matter in teeth containing nerves and blood vessels).

A variety of factors can cause tooth decay in pediatric patients who later undergo BMTs. For example, previous studies by other researchers have found that children receiving chemotherapy and radiation are at increased risk of tooth damage that causes decay. Radiation can also reduce the amount of saliva released by the mouth’s salivary glands, which in turn can lead to growth of decay-causing bacteria.

Some children undergoing cancer treatment also develop ulcers in the lining of their mouths, which discourage them from eating certain foods. Instead, these children prefer sweet foods, which don’t sting, but do promote tooth decay. In addition, some children undergoing cancer treatments must consume high levels of carbohydrates to ensure they get enough calories, which also encourages the growth of decay-causing bacteria.

Since small cuts in the tissue around teeth caused by brushing could become serious sources of blood loss, children are sometimes forbidden to brush their teeth if they suffer from severely reduced levels of platelets--blood cells that trigger clot formation. Finally, young children often cannot brush their own teeth properly, and their parents might fail to brush their children’s teeth.

"Our findings clearly show that children about to undergo bone marrow transplantation should be examined for dental problems that might promote infections," said Christopher C. Rowland, D.D.S., the dentist in the Department of Surgery at St. Jude and a co-author of the paper. "This is also an opportune time to educate patients and parents about proper oral hygiene. Meticulous dental care can minimize the development of therapy-related caries. Follow-up examinations after transplantation and immunosuppression will also help to minimize sources of potential infection."

Other authors of the paper include Mitchell D. Vaughan (University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis); Xin Tong, D. Kumar Srivastava, Gregory A. Hale and Richard Rochester (St. Jude).

Kelly Perry | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.stjude.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University

nachricht The first analysis of Ewing's sarcoma methyloma opens doors to new treatments
01.12.2016 | IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>