Peppermint oil could be used to reduce nausea and vomiting in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy


Peppermint oil could be used to reduce nausea and vomiting in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy


Scientists from Batman University Health College and Erciyes University Faculty of Health Science performed a study to investigate whether peppermint oil had any effect on the frequency and severity of nausea, retching, and vomiting in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy treatment.

The study took place between September 2017 and September 2018, and involved patients from the ambulatory chemotherapy unit of a public hospital in Batman, Turkey. The participants were split into two groups – the intervention group and the control group.

The intervention group applied one drop of peppermint oil below their nose three times daily. They did this for the five days after they received chemotherapy, in addition to the routine antiemetic treatment. The control group only received the routine antiemetic treatment. The results were measured using VAS – a score which measures the severity of nausea.

The scientists discovered that in the intervention group, the VAS nausea score was significantly lower than the control group. There was also a significant improvement in the frequency of vomiting, retching, and nausea.

The team concluded that peppermint oil used alongside antiemetics in the days following chemotherapy with moderate to low emetic risk could be recommended to help patients cope with the unpleasant side effects, as it significantly reduced both the frequency and severity of nausea, and also reduced the frequency of vomiting and retching.

Original study

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