Analysis of factors influencing the development of xerostomia during intensity-modulated radiotherapy

Ken Randall, Jason Stevens, Juan Fernando Yepes, Marcus E. Randall, Mahesh Kudrimoti, Jonathan Feddock, Jing Xi, Richard J. Kryscio, Craig S. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Objectives: Factors influencing xerostomia during intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) were assessed. Methods: A 6-week study of 32 head and neck cancer (HNC) patients was performed. Subjects completed the Xerostomia Inventory (XI) and provided stimulated saliva (SS) at baseline, week 2 and at end of IMRT. Influence of SS flow rate (SSFR), calcium and mucin 5b (MUC5b) concentrations and radiation dose on xerostomia was determined. Results: HNC subjects experienced mean SSFR decline of 36% by visit 2 (N = 27; P = .012) and 57% by visit 3 (N = 20; P = .0004). Concentrations of calcium and MUC5b increased, but not significantly during IMRT (P > .05). Xerostomia correlated most with decreasing salivary flow rate as determined by Spearman correlations (P < .04) and linear mixed models (P < .0001). Conclusions: Although IMRT is sparing to the parotid glands, it has an early effect on SSFR and the constituents in saliva in a manner that is associated with the perception of xerostomia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)772-779
Number of pages8
JournalOral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology and Oral Radiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the grants from the National Institute of Health U01 DE017793 and M01-RR02602 , the University of Kentucky General Clinical Research Core and partially supported by the Clinical Translational Science Award: UL1RR033173.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oral Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Dentistry (miscellaneous)
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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