Effect of honey mouthwash and oral care protocol on weight loss among patients with acute myeloid leukemia undergoing chemotherapy

Arezoo Khanjani Pour-Fard-Pachekenari, Azad Rahmani, Akram Ghahramananian, Arefeh Davoodi, Mohammad Asghari Jafarabadi, Jamal Eivazi Ziaei

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Introduction: Patients with cancer during their chemotherapy period are more at risk for nutritional problems and weight loss due to oral problems. Over the years, oral care protocols and mouthwashes have been developed to control this problem. Recently, in some studies, the effect of oral care programs and honey on the nutritional status of patients under chemotherapy has been studied. The aim of this study was to compare the effect of honey mouthwash and an oral care protocol on weight loss in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) undergoing chemotherapy. Materials and Methods: In this single-blind clinical trial, sixty patients with AML under chemotherapy admitted to Ghazi Tabatabaee hospital of Tabriz, Iran were selected with convenience sampling and were randomly assigned into three groups: honey mouthwash (n=20) and oral care (n=20) and a control group (n=20). In addition to routine care, patients in the oral care group received twice daily toothbrush, dental floss was used once a day and normal saline mouthwash, and in the honey group, honey mouthwash was used four times a day for 30 seconds (honey to water ratio 1:20). The weight of patients was measured using a digital scale at baseline and at 4 weeks follow-up (4 times). Results: The trend of weight changes in the control group was decreasing; in the honey mouthwash group, after the first week was ascending, and in the oral care group, it was almost constant.Importantly,comparison of mean weight in the study groups during the first and second weeks was not significant (p>0.05) but at the end of the third week, the difference of mean weight of the patients in the honey and control group (p=0.039) and at the end of the week in the honey and control group (p=0.001) and honey and oral care (p=0.04) were significant. The effect of intervention of honey mouthwash was significant over time (p<0.01). Conclusion: The results of the study showed that honey mouthwash improved the weight of patients during the stay, while this trend was reversed in the other two groups. Considering the effectiveness of honey mouthwash and easy use, the using this mouthwash with oral hygiene education is recommended to improve nutritional indices of patients in cancer care units.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-60
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Honey
  • Mouthwash
  • Mucositis
  • Oral Hygiene
  • Weight Loss

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