Nutritional Implications of Dental and Swallowing Issues in Head and Neck Cancer
August 01, 1998
he authors are to be commended for providing an overview of several important, though often overlooked, management issues in head and neck cancer. In their overview of nutrition, they correctly state that the nutritional status of head and neck cancer patients is frequently compromised even before cancer diagnosis and treatment. Documented reasons for this include poor oral hygiene, ill-fitting dentures, and a high incidence of alcoholism. Consequently, it is imperative that patients’ pretreatment nutritional status be determined so that necessary dietary modifications can be made prior to therapy. As the authors emphasize, nutritional reassessment and intervention should continue during and after treatment.