Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Abstract – Objectives: To explore, among the institutionalized elderly in Spain, the association between functional dependence in manipulating aids used in oral self-care (oral hygiene dependence) and general functional capacities, as measured by the Index of Activities of Daily Oral Hygiene (ADOH) and the Barthel Index (BI), respectively.Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed in 2002 on 390 Spanish residents of a residential home for the elderly aged, 65–101 years. All study subjects underwent a oral examination and their ADOH and BI scores assessed. The association between the index scores was studied and the discriminant capacity of BI for oral hygiene dependence was calculated.Results: The mean number of decayed, missing, or filled permanent teeth (±SD) was 26.6 ± 7.3. The mean BI score was 68.31 (95% CI 64.35–72.27), and 172 individuals (44.1%; 95% CI 39.2–49.0%) were independent in all BI-measured functions. The mean ADOH score was 2.43 (95% CI 2.11–2.75), and 238 individuals (61.0%; 95% CI 56.2–65.9%) were independent for oral hygiene, 39 (10.0%; 95% CI 7.2–13.4%) required assistance (assistive devices), and 113 (29.0%; 95% CI 24.5–33.5%) were completely dependent. The BI scores were significantly correlated with the ADOH scores (r = −0.80, P 〈 0.001). The BI showed a high discriminant capacity to identify the individuals who were dependent for oral hygiene in this population (area under the ROC curve ± SE = 0.929 ± 0.013). Using the optimal cut-off point according to the Youden Index (〈61), the sensitivity was 0.87 ± 0.03 and specificity 0.87 ± 0.02.Conclusion: There is a close association between BI and ADOH in this population, which could be useful to identify elderly individuals who are dependent for oral hygiene.
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