Home screening of taste and oral trigeminal function: a feasibility study

Tomer Green, Mariano Mastinu*, Anne Wolf, Anna Oleszkiewicz, Anna Aronis, Thomas Hummel, M. Yanina Pepino, Masha Y. Niv

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: gustatory ability is a marker of health not routinely tested in the medical practice. The current study wants to assess whether taste strips can be useful to monitor taste function from home. Methods: we performed simple sensory tests in lab setting vs. unassisted testing at home, and compared the results with self-reports ability to taste and smell. Using paper strips impregnated with sweet, bitter, salty, or sour tastants, and with two trigeminal stimuli (capsaicin, tannins) in high and low concentrations, we assessed gustatory and trigeminal function in 74 participants (47 women) in the lab, where paper strips were administered by an experimenter, and in 77 participants (59 women) at home, where they self-administered the test. Results: we found that high (but not low) concentration taste strips are correctly identified by vast majority of participants. On average, taste identification, intensity and pleasantness scores did not differ for the 8 taste strips, while identification of capsaicin was significantly better in the lab. Taste identification scores correlated with intensity ratings in both settings (r = 0.56, in the lab, r = 0.48, at home, p < 0.005). Self-rated taste ability correlated with self-rated smell ability (r = 0.68, and r = 0.39, p ≤ 0.005), but not with scores in the strips test. Conclusion: home testing with impregnated taste strips is feasible, and can be used for telemedical purposes.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalEuropean Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2024.

Keywords

  • Gustatory assessment
  • Sensory tests
  • Seven-iTT
  • Subjective
  • Taste strips

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