Beth McLellan, M.D. Chief, Division of Dermatology Montefiore Medical Center Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Bacterial Decolonization Reduced Radiation Dermatitis in Patients with Nasal Staphylococcus aureus

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Beth McLellan, M.D.Chief, Division of Dermatology Montefiore Medical Center Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Dr. McLellan

Beth McLellan, M.D.
Chief, Division of Dermatology
Montefiore Medical Center
Albert Einstein College of Medicine

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? How is the decolonization initiated and maintained?

Response: We were interested in exploring whether bacteria on the skin plays a role in radiation dermatitis like it does in other skin diseases that cause a breakdown in the skin barrier. We used a bacterial decolonization regimen that includes chlorhexidine 2% cleanser for the body and mupirocin 2% ointment to the inside of the nose for 5 consecutive days before starting radiation therapy and repeated for an additional 5 days every other week for the duration of radiation.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Response:  We found that patients who have Staphylococcus aureus in their nose before they start radiation therapy for cancer, are more likely to develop grade 2-3 radiation dermatitis vs grade 0-1 dermatitis. Further, we found that using a bacterial decolonization regimen prior to and during radiation therapy prevents moist desquamation and decreases severity of radiation dermatitis in people with breast cancer.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: We should consider incorporating bacterial decolonization as a strategy to prevent radiation dermatitis and consider the role of bacteria in the pathogenesis of radiation dermatitis. 

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a results of this study?

Response: Further research is needed to explore the role of the entire skin microbiome in radiation dermatitis and how can we use therapies that target the harmful skin bacteria.

I have no relevant disclosures

Citation:

Kost Y, Deutsch A, Mieczkowska K, et al. Bacterial Decolonization for Prevention of Radiation DermatitisA Randomized Clinical TrialJAMA Oncol. Published online May 04, 2023. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2023.0444
https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaoncology/article-abstract/2804692

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