Background Sjogren’s Syndrome (SS) is a systemic autoimmune disease the mainly affects exocrine glands and usually presents a persistent dry mouth (xerostomia) and/or dry eyes (xeroftalmia). Xerostomia is an unsatisfactory diagnostic criteria because is subjective and can be caused by other conditions like: side effects drugs, stress, depression, dehydration, radiation therapy, and other systemic diseases like sarcoidosis, amyloidosis, lymphoma, VIH infection, etc. Altho minor salivary gland biopsy (MSGB) is an easy and safety objective diagnostic methods is rather invasive and unpleasant for the patients.
Objectives Validate two simple, easy, noninvasive and nonexpensive diagnostic methods for xerostomia in Sjogren’s Syndrome (SS).
Methods Thirty-six (36) SS Patients with mean age 57 (range 31–74),32 female and 4 male, diagnosed according to revised European Community criteria were included in the study. 13 Patients with pSS (primary SS) 12 Patients with sSS (secondary SS) and 11 with probable pSS (3 criteria). We performed in all patients the Saliva Ferning Test (SFT), a qualitative test considered positive when fern leaf pattern was abnormal (Andonopoulos AP 1992; Cusumano NC 2000) and a semiquantitative unestimulated whole saliva flow rate test (UWSFR) considered positive for xerostomia when range for wet filter paper was 0–2 cm in 5 min (Lopez Jornet 1993). We evaluated the association between SFT and UWSFR with MSGB focus score III and IV according to Chisholm-Mason gradin system) Chi Squared test and Exact Fisher test was used to compared qualitative variables. P values < 0.05 were considered significant.
Results 21 Patients (58%) had abnormal SFT associated with MSGB focus score III-IV E. Fisher significant (p < 0.05) 14 Patients (38%) had UWSFR range 0–2 cm in 5 min with MSGB focus score III-IV, Chi-Squared significant (p < 0.05). 12 Patients (33%) both positive SFT and UWSFR had significantly association with MSGB focus score III-IV E. Fisher (p < 0.05). We did not find significance, E. Fisher (p = 6) when compared SFT with UWSFR.
Conclusion This study sugest that both, easy, safety noninvasive and nonexpensive saliva tests could be performed by the physician like a screening, in those patients with xerostomia and SS suspicion.
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