Quantitative assessment of gustatory function in a clinical context using impregnated “taste strips�

Volume: 41 - Issue: 1

Firstpage: 2 - Lastpage: 6

C. Mueller - S. Kallert - B. Renner - K. Stiassny - A.F.P. Temmel - T. Hummel - G. Kobal

Assessment of gustatory sensitivity in a clinical setting is the prerequisite for correct diagnosis and adequate treatment of taste dysfunction. Despite of this no taste test has been established for the routine clinical testing. The aim of the present study was to create a protocol which is easy to administer. The presently used technique is based on strips made from filter paper which were impregnated with different taste solutions (four concentrations each for sweet, sour, salty and bitter). These strips are placed on the tongue and subjects are asked to identify the taste quality. After establishing the concentration range of the taste solutions, the test was tried in 69 subjects. Each subject received eighteen taste strips (four concentrations of each taste quality plus two blanks) in a pseudo-randomized sequence. Results from this new procedure correlated significantly with the results of the well established extensive three-drop-technique (r69=0.67). Repeated measures indicated good reproducibility of the results for the taste strips (r69=0.68). These data suggest the usefulness of this new technique in routine clinical practice. Major advantages are long shelf-life, convenience of administration, short time needed for testing (approximately 8 min), and the possibility to test each side of the tongue separately.

C. Mueller - S. Kallert - B. Renner - K. Stiassny - A.F.P. Temmel - T. Hummel - G. Kobal - Quantitative assessment of gustatory function in a clinical context using impregnated “taste strips�
Rhinology 41-1: 2-6, 2003

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