Medline: 9691508

Cancer Nursing 21(4): 263-268, 1998.

The PRO-SELF Mouth Aware program: an effective approach for reducing chemotherapy-induced mucositis.

Larson PJ, Miaskowski C, MacPhail L, et al.


Many oncology patients receive chemotherapy drugs that have the potential to induce oral mucositis. If mucositis is not prevented, patients will have to manage the problems associated with mucositis: pain, local infection, and decreased ability to take fluids or food. At the time of this writing, clinical approaches for mucositis management are variable and generally ineffective. The mouth care program, PRO-SELF: Mouth Aware (PSMA), presented in this article, was found to be a significant component of a self-care program that may have reduced the incidence of chemotherapy-induced mucositis. The PSMA program has three dimensions: (a) didactic information, (b) development of self-care exercises (skills), and (c) supportive interactions with a nurse in the setting where the patients are receiving their treatment. This program focuses on decreasing the direct (i.e., incidence and severity of mucositis) and indirect morbidities of oral mucositis (i.e., number of local infections, level of discomfort/pain, and disruption in fluid and/or food intake). It provides the critical dimensions (i.e., specific information, self-care exercises, and nurse support) to promote the prevention of mucositis. The PSMA program is designed to provide patients with a definitive self-care repertoire to manage chemotherapy-induced mucositis in the home without the direct supervision of a health care provider.

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Dr. G. Quade