Global Health Journal Club: Is Honey Effective as a Treatment for Chemotherapy-induced Mucositis in Paediatric Oncology Patients?

December 13, 2017


Oral mucositis (OM) is an inflammatory response of mucosal epithelium to the cytotoxic effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy causing severe oral pain and ulceration, which may complicate the management of cancer. The Mucositis Prevention Guideline Development Group has developed an international guideline for the prevention of mucositis in children receiving treatment for cancer or undergoing haematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Evidence-based preventative strategies include cryotherapy, low-level light therapy and keratinocyte growth factor. However, these strategies are often not available in resource-poor settings. There is some evidence that honey may be a suitable treatment for OM in adult patients. We performed a literature search of 11 databases to find papers exploring the use of honey to treat chemotherapy-associated mucositis in paediatric oncology patients. We found four papers, which provide Grade C evidence that honey is effective as a preventative and therapeutic measure for OM in paediatric oncology patients.


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"These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease."
Never give a baby honey - can cause botulism )