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Fluctuating olfactory sensitivity and distorted odor perception in allergic rhinitis.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To characterize the relationship between allergic rhinitis, the severity and duration of nasal disease, olfactory function, and self-reported olfactory symptoms, including fluctuations or distortions in odor perception.

DESIGN

Assessment of olfactory function and symptoms of 90 patients with allergic rhinitis.

SETTING

A clinic of a university teaching hospital and research facility.

PATIENTS

Sixty patients who presented to the Taste and Smell Clinic who had positive allergy test results and 30 patients who presented to the Allergy-Immunology Clinic. The Taste and Smell Clinic patients were grouped by nasal-sinus disease status (30 without chronic rhinosinusitis or nasal polyps, 14 with chronic rhinosinusitis but without polyps, and 16 with nasal polyps).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES

Subjective olfactory symptom questionnaire and objective olfactory function tests.

RESULTS

The Allergy-Immunology Clinic patients were diagnosed as being normosmic and the Taste and Smell Clinic patients as being hyposmic or anosmic with olfactory loss that increased significantly with nasal-sinus disease severity. Comparisons with normative data confirm that olfactory scores observed in all groups were significantly lower than expected because of the aging process alone. The self-reported duration of olfactory loss increased significantly with nasal-sinus disease severity. The Taste and Smell Clinic patients without chronic rhinosinusitis or nasal polyps reported the greatest incidence of olfactory distortions and olfactory loss associated with upper respiratory tract infections.

CONCLUSIONS

There appears to be a continuum of duration and severity of olfactory loss in allergic rhinitis that parallels increasing severity of nasal-sinus disease. As a result of the increased frequency of respiratory infection associated with allergic rhinitis, these patients are at risk for damage to the olfactory epithelium.

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  • Publisher Full Text
  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Department of Medicine, Connecticut Chemosensory Clinical Research Center, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, USA.

    ,

    Source

    MeSH

    Adolescent
    Adult
    Aged
    Female
    Humans
    Male
    Middle Aged
    Nasal Polyps
    Nose Neoplasms
    Olfaction Disorders
    Perceptual Distortion
    Reference Values
    Rhinitis, Allergic, Perennial
    Sensory Thresholds
    Sinusitis
    Smell
    Taste Threshold

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    10488987

    Citation

    Apter, A J., et al. "Fluctuating Olfactory Sensitivity and Distorted Odor Perception in Allergic Rhinitis." Archives of Otolaryngology--head & Neck Surgery, vol. 125, no. 9, 1999, pp. 1005-10.
    Apter AJ, Gent JF, Frank ME. Fluctuating olfactory sensitivity and distorted odor perception in allergic rhinitis. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1999;125(9):1005-10.
    Apter, A. J., Gent, J. F., & Frank, M. E. (1999). Fluctuating olfactory sensitivity and distorted odor perception in allergic rhinitis. Archives of Otolaryngology--head & Neck Surgery, 125(9), pp. 1005-10.
    Apter AJ, Gent JF, Frank ME. Fluctuating Olfactory Sensitivity and Distorted Odor Perception in Allergic Rhinitis. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1999;125(9):1005-10. PubMed PMID: 10488987.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Fluctuating olfactory sensitivity and distorted odor perception in allergic rhinitis. AU - Apter,A J, AU - Gent,J F, AU - Frank,M E, PY - 1999/9/17/pubmed PY - 1999/9/17/medline PY - 1999/9/17/entrez SP - 1005 EP - 10 JF - Archives of otolaryngology--head & neck surgery JO - Arch. Otolaryngol. Head Neck Surg. VL - 125 IS - 9 N2 - OBJECTIVE: To characterize the relationship between allergic rhinitis, the severity and duration of nasal disease, olfactory function, and self-reported olfactory symptoms, including fluctuations or distortions in odor perception. DESIGN: Assessment of olfactory function and symptoms of 90 patients with allergic rhinitis. SETTING: A clinic of a university teaching hospital and research facility. PATIENTS: Sixty patients who presented to the Taste and Smell Clinic who had positive allergy test results and 30 patients who presented to the Allergy-Immunology Clinic. The Taste and Smell Clinic patients were grouped by nasal-sinus disease status (30 without chronic rhinosinusitis or nasal polyps, 14 with chronic rhinosinusitis but without polyps, and 16 with nasal polyps). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Subjective olfactory symptom questionnaire and objective olfactory function tests. RESULTS: The Allergy-Immunology Clinic patients were diagnosed as being normosmic and the Taste and Smell Clinic patients as being hyposmic or anosmic with olfactory loss that increased significantly with nasal-sinus disease severity. Comparisons with normative data confirm that olfactory scores observed in all groups were significantly lower than expected because of the aging process alone. The self-reported duration of olfactory loss increased significantly with nasal-sinus disease severity. The Taste and Smell Clinic patients without chronic rhinosinusitis or nasal polyps reported the greatest incidence of olfactory distortions and olfactory loss associated with upper respiratory tract infections. CONCLUSIONS: There appears to be a continuum of duration and severity of olfactory loss in allergic rhinitis that parallels increasing severity of nasal-sinus disease. As a result of the increased frequency of respiratory infection associated with allergic rhinitis, these patients are at risk for damage to the olfactory epithelium. SN - 0886-4470 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/10488987/Fluctuating_olfactory_sensitivity_and_distorted_odor_perception_in_allergic_rhinitis_ L2 - https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology/fullarticle/vol/125/pg/1005 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -