New Jersey Patent of the Month – June 2022
Chemotherapy is a well-known drug treatment regimen that uses powerful chemicals to kill fast-growing cells in your body. Some of the common and major side effects are also well known, from nausea to hair loss. Unfortunately, the list of side effects is quite extensive, and includes inflammation along the inside of the mouth, inner, cheeks, and lips. This inflammation is called mucositis and, if bad enough, can result in sores.
While some efforts are made to cool the oral tissue during treatment – by putting an ice cube in the patient’s mouth – this causes vasoconstriction of the tissue. The closed off tissue then takes up less of the chemotherapy agent making treatment less effective. In addition, this method only lessens the formation of sores for short periods of time.
ChemoMouthPiece, LLC has designed a device meant to provide long term relief and prevention. Their device ensures an even cooling of the entire oral cavity while remaining comfortable enough for patients to remain relaxed or even sleep during use.
The little ice pack is designed to be held in place just like a retainer, if both the upper and lower portions were connected. Teeth fit within grooves while material preses gently against the roof of the mouth, tongue, and the cheeks. Each device is formed for an individual patient to comfortably fit within their mouth. This allows the device to match mouth size, jaw shape, and teeth positioning so that no discomfort is imparted.
A hole in the center allows the patient to easily breathe through their mouth when using the device. If medically warranted, an oxygen tube can even be fed through the hole to aid in breathing.
The device includes two chambers, a center core filled with filtered water, and an outer section filled with proprietary saline, which can reach freezing temperatures without solidifying. The cooling effect reduces the severity of oral mucositis.
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