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Gerodontology. 2007 Sep;24(3):151-61.

Oral health-related quality of life: a critical appraisal of assessment tools used in elderly people.

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Department of Community Dentistry, Piracicaba Dental School, State University of Campinas, Piracicaba, Sao Paulo, Brazil.



The purpose of this study was to undertake a critical appraisal of oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) measurements used for research in the elderly.


A variety of OHRQoL measurements have been developed in the past 20 years as a result of increased concern about the impact of oral conditions on a person's quality of life. There is need for an assessment aimed at prioritising the recommended measurements to be used for different purposes in the elderly.


Original English language papers using measurements to assess OHRQoL in the elderly were identified from Web of Science, EMBASE, PubMed, Medline and Lilacs databases. The search included all papers published from 1985 to February 2007. The criteria of assessment were: (i) measurement criteria (number of items and domains, and classification of the results found for each measurement); (ii) quantitative-qualitative criteria (frequency, acceptability, reproducibility, reliability, sensitivity and capability of being reproduced in other language versions).


In a total of 152 papers selected, 20 measurements were identified. However, only seven fulfilled all the measurement and quantitative-qualitative criteria.


Geriatric Oral Health Assessment Index, Subjective Oral Health Status Indicators, Oral Health Impact Profile-49, Dental Impact on Daily Living, Oral Health Impact Profile-14, Oral Impact on Daily Performances and German Version of the Oral Heath Impact Profile were considered as instruments of choice to assess OHRQoL in the elderly. The other 13 instruments identified require further research aimed at a validation process and the use of a language other than English.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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