This work was supported by Award Number R37AG011099 (K.J.C.) from the National Institute on Aging and EY06594 (R.K., B.E.K.K.). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute on Aging, National Eye Institute, or the National Institutes of Health.
Article first published online: 4 FEB 2011
Copyright © 2011 The American Laryngological, Rhinological, and Otological Society, Inc.
Volume 121, Issue 4, pages 873–878, April 2011
How to Cite
Schubert, C. R., Cruickshanks, K. J., Klein, B. E.K., Klein, R. and Nondahl, D. M. (2011), Olfactory impairment in older adults: Five-year incidence and risk factors. The Laryngoscope, 121: 873–878. doi: 10.1002/lary.21416
The authors Report no Conflicts of Interest.
- Issue published online: 23 MAR 2011
- Article first published online: 4 FEB 2011
- Accepted manuscript online: 4 JAN 2011 03:46PM EST
- Manuscript Received: 24 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 20 OCT 2010
- smell disorders;
- Level of Evidence: 3c
The objective of this study was to determine the five-year incidence of olfactory impairment and associated risk factors in a general population of older adults.
Longitudinal population-based study.
Participants (n = 1,556) in the population-based Epidemiology of Hearing Loss Study had olfaction measured at the 5- and 10-year examinations (1998–2000 and 2003–2005, respectively). Olfactory ability was measured by the San Diego Odor Identification Test.
The five-year incidence of olfactory impairment was 12.5%. Incidence rates increased with age for men and women. In a multivariate model, age (odds ratio [OR] = 1.79, 95% CI, 1.61–2.00; for every five-year increase), a history of nasal polyps (OR = 2.33, 95% CI, 1.13–4.59), a history of deviated septum (OR = 2.05, 95% CI, 1.14–3.56), and a history of heavy alcohol use (OR = 1.84, 95% CI, 1.13–2.93) were associated with an increased risk of olfactory impairment, whereas use of lipid-lowering agents (OR = 0.68, 95% CI, 0.46–0.99; yes vs. no), exercising at least once a week (OR = 0.69, 95% CI, 0.48–0.98), and oral steroid use (OR = 0.37, 95% CI, 0.11–0.94) were associated with a decreased risk.
The five-year incidence of olfactory impairment is high in this population of older adults. Modifiable risk factors associated with impairment suggest some impairment could be amenable to prevention or treatment. Laryngoscope, 2011