Abstract: Aim To investigate with a reliable method the oral features in Italian patients in remission from cancer, highlighting the relationship with age at cancer therapy and to compare the data with healthy controls.
Materials and methods Twenty five childhood cancer survivors treated under the age of 10 years with chemotherapy w/wo Haemopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation and/or head-neck Radiotherapy, in remission from cancer for at least 3 years, were examined for dental caries and enamel defects. To assess dental age and dental abnormalities a panoramic radiograph was taken. Patients were grouped according to age at cancer therapy (<3 years: subgroup Y; 3.1-5 years: subgroup M; >5 years: subgroup O). A control group of 26 healthy children was included.
Results There was not a statistically significant difference in caries prevalence between the two groups. A statistically significant difference between the two groups was found for enamel defects, dental abnormalities and dental age. The chi-squared test revealed a relationship between age at therapy and specific dental abnormalities.
Conclusion This study shows that cancer therapy may increase the risk of development of enamel defects and dental abnormalities, especially in children treated under the age of 3 years.