Radiation dermatitis – the unwelcome consequence of a life-saving therapy
Radiation dermatitis treatment
During radiation therapy not only cancer cells are destroyed, but also nearby existing healthy cells are also affected by this form of treatment. Additionally, a patient may develop unpleasant and sometimes serious side effects such as radiation dermatitis.10 The prevention and treatment of these side effects are an essential part of the whole treatment protocol because it can have an extensive impact on the treatment outcome.
The best way to manage radiation dermatitis is to prevent it.
In the prevention of radiation dermatitis, StrataXRT helps to preserve the fragile epidermis for longer while providing symptomatic relief at the same time.
In order to do so, it is recommended to increase the skin’s hydration level before therapy; maximize the water intake before and throughout the treatment and apply moisturizing agents that do not contain perfume or parabens. StrataXRT – a semi-occlusive, self-drying, transparent gel. It forms a thin protective film on the skin surface to minimize Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL) and therefore preserve the natural skin hydration. StrataXRT can be used after the very first radiation session to minimize the development of radiation dermatitis.
When a patient suffers from radiation dermatitis it is important to look after the treated body site. It is advised to follow these recommendations: 5, 33
During radiation therapy the skin may start to show the side effect radiation dermatitis which is characterized by itchiness and inflammation of the skin. To reduce these side effects it is essential to use a topical agent which ensures that the skin is well hydrated and protected from microbial invasion.18 When the skin toxicity increases dry or moist desquamation may develop. This is where an appropriate open-wound and anti-infective topical dressing should be applied to the affected areas.4, 8,12
StrataXRT addresses all stages of radiation dermatitis. It is the optimum product to treat radiation dermatitis, because of its unique characteristics: it forms a protective film during the drying phase which hydrates and protects compromised skin areas and superficial wounds from chemical and microbial invasion. It creates a moist wound healing environment which leads to a decrease in the body’s inflammatory response and faster wound healing.
If needed, StrataXRT can be combined with other medications to improve overall results. Ask your health care provider for medical advice (i.e. clinical oncologist, radiation therapy clinical nurse or radiographer specialist).
After radiation therapy, the treatment goals are the same as during the radiation therapy. The severity of skin reactions can increase and “peak” around 7 – 10 days after the end of radiation therapy.33 The main treatment target is to promote comfort and reduce the risk of complications or further trauma and infection. StrataXRT reduces the healing time significantly and additionally, it is bacteriostatic which minimizes the risk of infections.
Radiation dermatitis should be treated with a wound dressing that is easy to change and does not cause any additional trauma when it is removed.18 Patients can use StrataXRT themselves at home which increases the compliance for a successful treatment.