Been Radiated for your cancer, let’s address the skin?
Did you know that 95% of patients undergoing radiation therapy for cancer will experience dermatitis as a side effect. Think of the growing use of radiation in treating breast and throat cancers as examples.
With 20.1 million cancer patients diagnosed globally in 2020, 9.5 million of those patients will be undergoing radiation therapy and will develop radiation dermatitis.
The radiation therapy causes changes to the skin including itching, swelling, and can progress to destruction of many layers of the skin. The result is pain, redness, and scarring. Consider the impact that this will have on one’s life.
Many of these patients also face limitations on the radiation treatments because their dermatitis is so damaging to the integrity of their skin, that they need to forgo adequate amounts of therapy.
Radiation dermatitis costs to the patient:
- Interrupted treatment schedule
- Extended length of time of treatments due to loss of skin integrity
- Changes in physical energy leading to fatigue
- High stress from the treatments.2,3
- Loss of function in movement of the affected area
- Impact on both mental and emotional well being
These impacts from radiation dermatitis may include job loss, depression and social issues of appearance, leading to isolation and depression, thereby affecting the patients, their families and their quality of life.
In the industry, the common treatments consist of moisturizers and anesthetics (pain killers). They come in a number of configurations, including creams, ointments and dressings.
These options fail to address the underlying biology of wound healing. A majority of practitioners have found the current treatment options inadequate because they are not comprehensive in aiding the wound healing process while also minimizing the redness, pain and scarring.
Moist wound healing:
Research has shown that moist wound healing, in an optimally moist environment, promotes faster healing three to five times quicker than the healing of wounds that are allowed to dry out. Moisture enables keratinocyte cells to involve other cells in the healing process to effectively close a wound. A moist environment also allows keratinocytes to migrate across the wound surface easily without impedance from a crusty scab.
On the flip side, overexposure to moisture can compromise the skin’s integrity. Too much moisture disrupts the delicate molecular arrangement of intercellular lipids and the intercellular connections between epidermal cells. The moisture environment needs to be just right.
Zim Biosciences’ (Zim) technology addresses radiation dermatitis by delivering a “regenerative bio-complex” consisting of a polymer bound keratin. This combination feeds the skin water soluble keratin polypeptides, which increases the rate of the wound healing process, while also maintaining moisture retention.
The cream formulation minimizes the disruption of damaged tissue, is easy to apply and provides a scaffold for cellular repair, creating an instant natural skin barrier. This comprehensive, regenerative approach provides an optimum healing environment that promotes tissue repair with less pain, less redness and less scarring.
We’re in the R&D phase, meaning that our product is still being tested; however, be assured when we complete our work we will let you know.
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Winter, GD. Formation of the Scab and the Rate of Epithelization of Superficial Wounds in the Skin of the Young Domestic Pig. Nature. 1962;193:293-294.