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R. Zelig, L. Byham-Gray, S.R. Singer, E.R. Hoskin, A. Fleisch Marcus, G. Verdino, D.R. Radler, R. Touger-Decker

J Aging Res Clin Practice 2018;7:107-114

Background and Objective: Older adults are at risk for both impaired oral health and suboptimal nutritional status. The objective of this study was to explore the relationships between malnutrition risk and missing teeth in community-dwelling older adults. Design: This was a retrospective cross-sectional analysis of data obtained from the electronic health records of 107 patients aged 65 and older who attended an urban northeast US dental school clinic between June 1, 2015 and July 15, 2016. Odontograms and radiographs were used to identify teeth numbers and locations; malnutrition risk was calculated using the Self-Mini Nutritional Assessment (Self-MNA). Relationships between numbers of teeth and malnutrition risk were assessed using bivariate logistic regression. Results: Participants (N=107) were 72.6 years (SD=5.6) of age; 50.5% were female. Mean Self-MNA score was 12.3 (SD=2.0) reflective of normal nutrition status; 20.6% were at risk for malnutrition, 4.7% were malnourished. Greater than 87% were partially or completely edentulous. Those with 10-19 teeth had lower Self-MNA scores (mean=11.6, SD=2.5) than those with 0-9 teeth (mean=12.7, SD=1.3) or 20 or more teeth (mean=12.6, SD=1.8) and had an increased risk for malnutrition (OR=2.5, p=0.076). Conclusion: The majority of this sample of older adults were partially edentulous and of normal nutritional status. Those with 10-19 teeth were more likely to be at risk for malnutrition. Further studies are needed to examine relationships between tooth loss and malnutrition risk and the impact of impaired dentition on the eating experience in a larger sample and to inform clinical practice.

R. Zelig ; L. Byham-Gray ; S.R. Singer ; E.R. Hoskin ; A. Fleisch Marcus ; G. Verdino ; D.R. Radler ; R. Touger-Decker (2018): Dentition and Malnutrition Risk in Community-Dwelling Older Adults. The Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice (JARCP). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jarcp.2018.19


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