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Tooth loss and associated factors in long-term institutionalised elderly patients

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Tooth loss and associated factors in long-term institutionalised elderly patients Objective: 

To compare partial and total tooth loss in dependent institutionalised elderly patients and identify any associated factors. Background: 

A poor oral health status, together with a reduction of autonomy can seriously affect the general health and increase the risk of death in elderly people. Those with total tooth loss and in need of assistance are the most at risk. Materials and methods: 

In 2004, a cross-sectional study of 321 elderly patients was conducted in long-term hospital services provided in Montpellier, France. Socio-demographic, behavioural, medical and oral health information was recorded for each patient. Multivariate logistic regression models were performed to test the relationship between those covariates and partial or total tooth loss. Pearson chi-squared tests were used for bivariate analyses. Results: 

The proportion of edentulousness was 26.9%; among these12.6% had no dentures. The factors significantly associated with edentulism were: an age ‘older than 87 years’ [odds ratio (OR) = 9.4], the presence of a nephropathy (OR = 6.8), and inadequate oral hygiene (OR = 0.1). The factors most significantly associated with partial tooth loss (at least 21 missing teeth) were ‘cancerous disease’ (OR = 9.9), the presence of a nephropathy (OR = 5.6) and the presence of a neurological disease (OR = 4.1). The factors significantly related to dentate status (20 or more natural teeth retained) were ‘hypertension treatment’ (OR = 2.4), and ‘cortisone treatment’ (OR = 0.2). Conclusion: 

General health problems as well as a poor oral condition were significant risk indicators for tooth loss among the long-term institutionalised elderly. This suggests that the number of remaining teeth has a strong effect on oral health-related quality of life.
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Keywords: edentulousness; epidemiology; geriatric service; prosthesis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Oral Public Health, UFR of Odontology, Montpellier University I, Montpellier, France 2: Department of Prosthodontics, UFR of Odontology, Montpellier University I, Montpellier, France 3: Department of Oral Biology, UFR of Odontology, Montpellier University I, Montpellier, France

Publication date: December 1, 2007

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