Rapid Improvement and Maintained Effect with Steroid for Severe Salivary Dysphagia Due to Hypopharyngeal Cancer: Report of a Case

Kenro Sawada, Tetsusuke Yoshimoto, Yayoi Mizumoto, Naomi Kumazawa, Kazumi Hasegawa, Kumi Gouji
2017 Palliative Care Research  
Backgrounds: Salivary dysphagia due to digestive tract obstruction from pharyngeal and cervical esophageal cancer is a major cause of drooling, and the retention of saliva in the mouth is annoying to patients. Case report: An 87-year-old woman with recurrent hypopharyngeal cancer after radiation therapy complained that she could not sleep at night because of continuous sputa accumulation, and that she had to repeatedly eliminate saliva throughout day. Intravenous betamethasone at dose of 8 mg
more » ... r day provided symptom relief the day after its administration. Her score on the Support Team Assessment Schedule, Japanese version (STAS-J) for salivary dysphagia decreased from 4 before treatment to 1 within two days after the initial administration. The dose was decreased to 2 mg per day six days after the start of administration, but the symptom relief continued. No symptom recurrence was seen for the two months that steroids were administered. Discussion: Our STAS-J finding indicates that the anti-inflammatory effect of betamethasone produces a rapid response that is maintained for months in cases of stenosis due to malignancy. Conclusions: Treatment with high dose steroid has the possibility of the relief of suffering caused by difficulty swallowing saliva. Palliat Care Res 2017; 12 (4) : 565-69
doi:10.2512/jspm.12.565 fatcat:fq2n6h5grfbaba2n4haloi5rzy