The aim was to study whether the anticholinergic burden of drugs is related to xerostomia and salivary secretion among community-dwelling elderly people.
Anticholinergic drugs have been shown to be a risk factor for dry mouth, but little is known about the effects of cumulative exposure to anticholinergic drugs measured by anticholinergic burden on salivary secretion or xerostomia.
The study population consisted of 152 community-dwelling, dentate, non-smoking, older people from the Oral Health GeMS study. The data were collected by interviews and clinical examinations. Anticholinergic burden was determined using the Anticholinergic Drug Scale (ADS). A Poisson regression model with robust error variance was used to estimate relative risks (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI 95%).
Participants with a high-anticholinergic burden (ADS = 3) were more likely to have xerostomia (RR: 3.17; CI: 1.44-6.96), low-unstimulated salivary flow (