Cancer survivors' tongues less sensitive to tastes than those of healthy peers
photo of M. Yanan Pepino with coffee mug
M. Yanina Pepino, Food Science and Human Nutrition.
Photo by Luka Gruev

Most survivors of squamous cell head and neck cancers report that their sense of taste is dulled, changed or lost during radiation treatment, causing them to lose interest in eating and diminishing their quality of life.

In a study of taste and smell dysfunction with 40 cancer survivors, scientists at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign found that the tips of these individuals’ tongues were significantly less sensitive to bitter, salty or sweet tastes than peers in the control group who had never been diagnosed with cancer. Read more from Illinois News Bureau.