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Barrier protective use of skin care to prevent chemotherapy-induced cutaneous symptoms and to maintain quality of life in patients with breast cancer

Authors Wohlrab J, Bangemann N, Kleine-Tebbe A, Thill M, Kümmel S, Grischke E, Richter R, Seite S, Lüftner D

Received 1 February 2014

Accepted for publication 29 April 2014

Published 1 August 2014 Volume 2014:6 Pages 115—122


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Johannes Wohlrab,1 Nikola Bangemann,2 Anke Kleine-Tebbe,3 Marc Thill,4,5 Sherko Kümmel,6 Eva-Maria Grischke,7 Rainer Richter,8 Sophie Seite,9 Diana Lüftner10

1Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Department of Dermatology and Venereology, Halle (Saale), 2Interdisciplinary Breast Centre, University Hospital Charité Berlin, Campus Benjamin Franklin, Berlin, Germany, 3Breast Centre DRK Hospital, Berlin, 4Breast Centre University of Lübeck, Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Lübeck, 5Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Agaplesion Markus Hospital, Frankfurt am Main, 6Breast Centre and Clinic of Senology, Hospital Essen-Mitte, Essen, 7Breast Centre University of Tübingen, Department of Gynaecology, Tübingen, 8L'Oréal, Deutschland GmbH, Düsseldorf, 9La Roche-Posay, Dermatological Laboratories, Asnières, France; 10University Hospital Charité Berlin, Campus Benjamin Franklin, Department of Hematology, Oncology and Tumour Immunology, Berlin, Germany

Purpose: Chemotherapy with anthracyclines, taxanes, or alkylating agents often causes cutaneous side effects. Nonspecific inhibition of the proliferative activity of keratinocytes has antidifferentiation effects that lead to defects in the barrier function and, thus, to dry, itchy, and irritable skin. These cutaneous symptoms reduce the quality of life of the patients considerably. Conditioning with topical application of niacinamide uses the cytoprotective and barrier stabilizing effect of vitamin B3.
Patients and methods: A multicenter randomized crossover study investigated the influence of the test preparation on the quality of life compared to standard care for 73 patients with breast cancer undergoing adjuvant or neoadjuvant cytostatic therapy. Primary target parameter was the Dermatology Life Quality Index with its respective subscales after 6 weeks of a twice-daily application of the respective preparations. Additionally, specific symptoms such as pruritus, dryness, and irritability have been assessed using visual analog scales.
Results: Regarding the total score of the Dermatology Life Quality Index, no relevant differences could be observed. However, the results for the "symptoms and feelings" subscale show a significant advantage in favor of the test preparation. Significant superiority of the test preparation could also be observed in the secondary target parameters, the visual analog scales (P<0.05).
Conclusion: The results show for the first time a significant superiority of prophylactic application of niacinamide for maintaining quality of life while undergoing cytostatic treatment.

Keywords: supportive therapy, niacinamide, chemotherapy, anthracycline, taxane

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