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Post-Transplant Events

Taste disorders and oral evaluation in patients undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic SCT


The aim of this study was to evaluate taste perception, salivary flow rate and oral pathologies in three different groups of patients undergoing hematopoietic SCT (HSCT) classified according to time post transplant. Group I (n=20) up to 150 days after HSCT, group II (n=20) between 151 and 1095 days and group III (n=21) more than 1095 days. Taste acuity was measured by four basic tastes of four solutions, in three concentrations (M): NaCl, sucrose, citric acid and caffeine. Patients classified flavors as sweet, sour, salty, bitter and without flavor. The intensity was considered high, medium and low. Unstimulated saliva was collected and salivary flow rates (ml/min) were determined. Of 61 patients, 31 had chronic GVHD. For the sweet solution, the high and low concentrations represented a challenge for those patients. No patients were sensitive to the low concentration of caffeine solution (P=0.05). Saliva flow rate was diminished in 10 of 61 (16%) patients and hyposalivation was more intense in groups II/III (P=0.007). There was no correlation between taste dysfunction and oral chronic GVHD. The results indicated taste alterations only for the sweet and salty tastes even in patients up to 3 years after HSCT and may not correlate with oral chronic GVHD and with hyposalivation.

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This work was supported for grant by the Sao Paulo State Research Support Foundation—FAPESP (proc no. 2008/1857). The authors thank Ms Raquel Suzana Foglio for English review.

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Correspondence to C C Boer.

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Boer, C., Correa, M., Miranda, E. et al. Taste disorders and oral evaluation in patients undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic SCT. Bone Marrow Transplant 45, 705–711 (2010).

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