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Volume 19 , Issue 5
September/October 2006

Pages 475481

Association of Masticatory Performance with Age, Posterior Occlusal Contacts, Occlusal Force, and Salivary Flow in Older Adults

Kazunori Ikebe, DDS, PhD / Ken-ichi Matsuda, DDS / Kentaro Morii, DDS, PhD / Masako Furuya-Yoshinaka, DDS, PhD / Takashi Nokubi, DDS, PhD / Robert P. Renner, DDS

PMID: 17323726

Purpose: This study aimed to investigate the effect of age, posterior occlusal contacts, occlusal force, and salivary flow on masticatory performance in older adults. Materials and Methods: The study sample consisted of 328 independently living people over the age of 60 years. Masticatory performance was determined by the concentration of dissolved glucose obtained from test gummy jellies, which are the standardized food developed for measuring masticatory performance. Bilateral maximal occlusal force in the intercuspal position was measured with pressure-sensitive sheets. Stimulated whole saliva was collected using the mastication method. Subjects were grouped into 3 categories by posterior occlusal contacts according to the Eichner Index. Results: The multiple linear regression analysis showed that, with other variables controlled, masticatory performance was significantly associated with posterior occlusal contacts (b = .24, P < .001 for Eichner group B; b = .52, P < .001 for Eichner group C), occlusal force (b = .28, P < .001), and hyposalivation (b = .08, P < .046) (R2 = 0.49). Within the groups classified by the Eichner Index, occlusal force was significantly associated with masticatory performance; however, age was not. For salivary flow rate, hyposalivation had a significant relationship with masticatory performance in group C (P = .003) and group B (P = .047), but no significant relationship in group A. Conclusion: A decline of posterior occlusal contacts, occlusal force, and hyposalivation appear to be associated with masticatory performance with aging in older adults. Int J Prosthodont 2006;19:475481

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