Prevalence of Candida Species in the Oral Cavity of Oral Cancer Patients Undergoing Radiotherapy
Objective: To evaluate prevalence of various species of candida in the oral cavity of oral cancer patients undergoing head and neck radiotherapy.
Method: 60 patients of oral cancer undergoing radiotherapy who have received at least 40 grays of radiation and 60 non-cancer controls were included in the study. Oral swab was taken and cultured on Sabouraud’s Dextrose Agar media. In the cases positive for candida, three tests were done for species identification: Germ tube test, growth in Chromogenic agar media and carbohydrate assimilation test.
Results: The most prevalent species isolated was Candida albicans (61.1%). The most common non-albicans species was Candida tropicalis (20.4%). Other two species isolated were Candida krusei (11.1%) and Candida glabrata (7.4%). However, in the control group, Candida albicans was the only species isolated.
Conclusion: Although C. albicans is the most prevalent species isolated in oral cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy, non-albicans species have also been emerging as opportunistic pathogens.
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