Effects of drinking molecular hydrogen water on the quality of life of cancer patients treated with radiation therapy
This is the first report demonstrating the benefits of drinking molecular hydrogen water in liver cancer patients receiving radiation therapy for malignant tumors.
– Molecular hydrogen dissolved in water improved the QOL of (liver) cancer patients reciving radiotherapy
– Molecular hydrogen water mitigated oxidative stress marker during radiotherapy
– Molecular hydrogen water did NOT compromise the radiation cancer treatment efficacies
-Molecular hydrogen water treatment did NOT alter liver function or blood composition during radiotherapy
This study examined whether molecular hydrogen (dissolved in water ) treatment, improved QOL in patients receiving radiotherapy.
Cancer patients receiving radiotherapy often experience fatigue and impaired quality of life (QOL).
Most radiation-induced symptoms are believed to be associated with increased oxidative stress and inflammation, due to the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during radiotherapy, and may significantly affect the patient’s quality of life (QOL) .
Molecular hydrogen (dissolve in water) can be administered as a therapeutic medical gas, has selective ANTIoxidant( molecular hydrogen ( water ) neutralizes only bad free radicals while supporting the beneficial ones) & ANTIinflammatory (molecular hydrogen( water )reduces inflammation in tisues) properties.
Drinking liquids(i.e. : water) with dissolved molecular hydrogen represents a novel method of molecular hydrogen gas delivery that is easily translatable into clinical practice, with beneficial effects for several medical conditions, including atherosclerosis, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and cognitive impairment during aging and in Parkinson’s disease [7–11].
A randomized, placebo-controlled study was performed to evaluate the effects of drinking molecular hydrogen-rich water on 49 patients receiving radiotherapy for malignant liver tumors.
The subjects were randomly assigned to groups to either drink molecular hydrogen-rich water for 6 weeks (n = 25) or drink water containing a placebo (n = 24).
Subjects were provided with four 500 mL bottles of drinking molecular hydrogen water per day .
Molecular hydrogen rich water had final molecular hydrogen concentration; 0.55~0.65 mM.
The subjects were expected to consume 100-300 mL of molecular hydrogen-rich water more than 10 times per day for a total minimum consumption of 1500 mL (1.5 L) and a maximum consumption of 2000 mL (2.0 L).
Oral intake of molecular hydrogen water or placebo water started on the first day of radiotherapy and continued for 6 weeks.
All participants received 5040-6500 cGy of radiotherapy for 7-8 weeks using a 6 MV system (Cyber Knife, Fanuc, Yamanashi, Japan).
All the liver cancer patients survived through the 6 week follow-up period when the QOL questionnaire was administered.
The Korean version of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer’s QLQ-C30 instrument was used to evaluate global health status and QOL. The concentration of derivatives of reactive oxidative metabolites and biological antioxidant power in the peripheral blood were assessed.
Results & Conclusions
The consumption of molecular hydrogen-rich water for 6 weeks reduced reactive oxygen metabolites in the blood and maintained blood oxidation potential. QOL scores during radiotherapy were SIGNIFICANTLY IMPROVED in patients treated with molecular hydrogen-rich water compared to patients receiving placebo water.
There was no difference in tumor response to radiotherapy between the two groups( meaning drinking molecular hydrogen water did not interfere with the desired antitumor effects of radiation therapy ).
Daily consumption of molecular hydrogen-rich water is a potentially novel, therapeutic strategy for improving QOL after radiation exposure.
Consumption of hydrogen-rich water reduces the biological reaction to radiation-induced oxidative stress without compromising anti-tumor effects.
Molecular hydrogen dissolved in water improved the QOL of (liver) cancer patients receiving radiotherapy
The QOL of the liver cancer patients who were given placebo water deteriorated significantly within the first month of radiotherapy (Figure1A)
Gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms are one of the most common complaints of patients undergoing radiotherapy and are considered to have a high impact on the patient’s QOL after 6 weeks of radiotherapy.
The patients consuming molecular hydrogen water experienced significantly less appetite loss and fewer tasting disorders compared to the patients consuming placebo water.
Liver cancer patients experience GI symptoms and decreased QOL during radiotherapy. These symptoms usually occur as a result of the body repairing damage to healthy cells, are particularly common towards the end of a course of radiation treatment, and can last for some time. The symptoms and their impact on QOL can be worsened by having to travel to the hospital each day.
Drinking molecular hydrogen-rich water improved the QOL of the liver cancer patients receiving radiotherapy and did not require additional hospital visits.
There were no differences between the groups in the QOL subscales for fatigue, depression, or sleep. No significant difference was seen in the mean scores for vomiting or diarrhea (Figure1B).
Molecular hydrogen water mitigated oxidative stress marker during radiotherapy
Before treatment, there were no differences in total hydroperoxide levels, representative of total dROM levels, between the treatment groups.
Radiotherapy markedly increased total hydroperoxide levels in the patients consuming placebo water.
However, drinking molecular hydrogen water prevented this increase in total serum hydroperoxide, as determined by the dROM test (Figure2A), indicating DECREASED OXIDATIVE STRESS during radiotherapy in the liver cancer patients who consumed molecular hydrogen water.
Similarly, endogenous serum antioxidant activity significantly deteriorated during radiotherapy in the patients consuming placebo water, and biologic antioxidant activity was MAINTAINED in liver cancer patients who consumed molecular hydrogen-rich water, even after 6 weeks of radiotherapy (Figure2B).
Radiotherapy is associated with an increase in ROS, followed by damage to DNA, lipids, and proteins, and activation of transcription factors and signal transduction pathways. It has been estimated that 60-70% of the ionizing radiation-induced cellular damage is caused by hydroxyl radicals .
Therefore, a number of trials with the goal of reducing adverse effects due to excess ROS production have been performed with antioxidants delivered during the course of radiotherapy. Supplementation with α-tocopherol improves the salivary flow rate and maintains salivary parameters . Treatment with the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase prevented radiotherapy-induced cystitis and rectitis in bladder cancer patients receiving radiotherapy . In addition, the combined use of pentoxifylline and vitamin E reduced radiation-induced lung fibrosis in patients with lung cancer receiving radiotherapy .
Thus, in general, supplementation with antioxidants is likely to offer overall benefits in the treatment of adverse effects of radiotherapy.
Furthermore, of significant concern is the finding that high doses of antioxidants administered as adjuvant therapy might compromise the efficacy of radiation treatment and increase of the risk of local recurrence of cancer [25,26].
Hence, the relatively lower toxicity associated with the use of these antioxidant agents is appealing, but not at the cost of poor tumor control.
In contrast, in this study, drinking molecular hydrogen-rich water did NOT affect radiotherapy’s anti-tumor effects.
Molecular hydrogen water did NOT compromise the radiation cancer treatment efficacies
Tumor response to radiotherapy was similar between the cancer treatment groups, and 12 of 24 (50.0%) liver cancer patients in the placebo group and 12 of 25 (48%) patients in molecular hydrogen water group exhibited either a completed response (CR) or a partial response (PR). There were no patients in either group with progressive disease (PD) during the follow-up period (3 months). Thus, drinking molecular hydrogen water did NOT compromise the anti-tumor effects of radiotherapy.
Our results may suggest that hydrogen water functions not only as an antioxidant, but also plays a protective role by inducing radioprotective hormones or enzymes.
Molecular hydrogen water treatment did NOT alter liver function or blood composition during radiotherapy
There were no significant differences in aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase (γ-GTP) and total cholesterol levels at week 0 and week 6, regardless of the type of water consumed(Table2), indicating that molecular hydrogen water consumption did NOT alter liver function.
Similarly, there were no significant differences in red blood cell count, white blood cell count, or platelet count between patients consuming molecular hydrogen water and patients consuming placebo water (Table3).
This finding may provide the foundation for a clinically applicable, effective, and safe strategy for the delivery of molecular hydrogen gas (dissolved in water) to mitigate radiation-induced cellular injury.
Oral intake of daily molecular hydrogen-supplemented water might be a prophylactic strategy to improve QOL of the (liver cancer ) patients receiving radiotherapy.
Although the mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects of molecular hydrogen-rich water during radiotherapy have not been clearly elucidated, drinking molecular hydrogen dissolved in water reduced dROM levels and maintained BAP levels in the serum, suggesting molecular hydrogen-rich water exhibits potent systemic antioxidant activity.
The safety of molecular hydrogen-rich water has also been determined as well as the optimal concentration of molecular hydrogen dissolved in water;
Daily intake of molecular hydrogen-rich water may be a promising approach for counteracting radiation-induced impairments to QOL.
This therapeutic use of molecular hydrogen is also supported by the work of Qian et al., who demonstrated that treating human lymphocyte AHH-1 cells with molecular hydrogen (saline) before irradiation significantly inhibited ionizing irradiation-induced apoptosis and increased cell viability in vitro.
They also showed that injection of molecular hydrogen-rich saline could protect the gastrointestinal endothelia from radiation-induced injury, decrease plasma malondialdehyde and intestinal 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine levels, and increase plasma endogenous antioxidants in vivo .
In conclusion, our study demonstrated that drinking molecular hydrogen-rich water improved QOL and reduced oxidative markers in patients receiving radiotherapy for liver tumors.
This novel approach of oral intake of molecular hydrogen-rich water may be applicable to a wide range of radiation-related adverse symptoms.
Drinking solubilized molecular hydrogen (dissolved in water) on a daily basis is beneficial and would be quite easy to administer without complicating or changing a patient’s lifestyle
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Radiotherapy is one of the major treatment options for malignant neoplasms. Nearly half of all newly diagnosed cancer patients will receive radiotherapy at some point during treatment and up to 25% may receive radiotherapy a second time . Radiotherapy adversely affects the surrounding normal cells . Acute radiation-associated side effects include fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth, loss of appetite, hair loss, sore skin, and depression. Radiation increases the long-term risk of cancer, central nervous system disorders, cardiovascular disease, and cataracts. The likelihood of radiation-induced complications is related to the volume of the irradiated organ, the radiation dose delivered, the fractionation of the delivered dose, the delivery of radiation modifiers, and individual radiosensitivity . Most radiation-induced symptoms are believed to be associated with increased oxidative stress and inflammation, due to the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during radiotherapy, and may significantly affect the patient’s quality of life (QOL) .
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