• mastication;
  • electromyography;
  • texture perception;
  • meat

This study was undertaken to evaluate the sensitivity of denture wearers to different food textures and to follow masticatory pattern adaptation with variation in texture using electromyography (EMG) recordings. Nine patients with complete dentures and 9 dentate control patients without any oro-dental pathology were studied. Six different samples of beef were obtained from the same muscle by altering the state of the muscle fibres and by variation of the cooking temperature. The variations in texture were mechanically controlled. Electromyographic activity was recorded during chewing. The patients' subjective appreciation of texture was reported using a 10-cm non-structured analogue scale. The following parameters were analysed: muscle work, number of masticatory cycles, number of rejected samples, initial tenderness, overall tenderness, juiciness, and duration of chewing for each sample in the mouth. Muscle activity was less for the edentulous group, particularly that of the masseter muscles. The masticatory pattern of complete denture wearers was less adapted to each sample texture than was that of the control group. Both groups perceived differences in texture of the samples. It was concluded that although texture perception is little altered, muscular adaptation to the bolus is reduced in patients with complete dentures.