Aim and objective: The aim and objective of the present study was to assess the oral conditions of middle-aged and elderly individuals with multiple myeloma.
Materials and methods: This cross-sectional, observational study was carried out in the city of Fortaleza, Ceará, in Northeastern Brazil. An oral examination was performed with 19 patients with multiple myeloma, and information on gender, age, diagnosis, diagnosis duration (months/years), and treatment duration (months/years) were collected. The gingival bleeding index (GBI) and probing depth (PD) were measured to check for periodontal disease, and the decayed, missing, and filled teeth (DMFT) index was used to assess dental conditions. Inferential statistics were also used, as well as the Mann–Whitney test to compare genders and continuous variables and the chi-square test for comparisons among the same groups with categorical variables. All statistical tests adopted a significance threshold of p ≤0.05.
Results: Among the 19 patients analyzed, 10 (52.6%) were elderly, and 9 (47.4%), middle-aged. The mean age of the participants was 63.4 ± 11.7 years, ranging from 48 to 83 years old. Statistical significance was found regarding missing teeth in the elderly group (p = 0.037), restored teeth in the middle-aged group (p = 0.029), and gingival bleeding among women (p = 0.050). Hyposalivation was observed in 89.5% of the individuals, of which 68.4% were characterized as moderate to severe.
Conclusion: Better dental conditions were observed in the middle-aged group when compared to the elderly. Men presented the lowest GBI values. The salivary flow of patients with multiple myeloma was reduced, and most of them showed moderate to severe hyposalivation. It can be assumed that such a situation is caused by the action of drugs, chemotherapy, or even age. Improvements in the oral health of these patients are needed in order to promote a better quality of life.
Clinical significance: Knowledge of the oral manifestations of multiple myeloma patients is essential to assist in the early diagnosis of these alterations, as well as to propose an adequate treatment plan, aiming to improve these patients’ quality of life.
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