Correlates of olfactory impairment in middle-aged non-diabetic Caucasian subjects with stage I–II obesity

A Correction to this article was published on 21 January 2021

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Abstract

Purpose

This study evaluates among middle-aged subjects with obesity the prevalence of olfactory impairment (OI) with respect to normative values and its correlation with body composition, cognition, sleep quality, and inflammation.

Methods

In 60 (31 women, 29 men) volunteers with a body mass index ≥ 30 to ≤ 40 kg/m2, aged ≥ 50 to ≤ 70 years, we assessed olfaction by the Sniffin’ Stick test. We measured anthropometrics, body composition and metabolic profiles and evaluated cognition by the MiniMental State Examination (MMSE) and sleep disturbances by the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI). Patients were classified into two groups according to a total olfactory score (odor Threshold, Discrimination, Identification, TDI) below or above the 25th percentile from age and gender-adjusted normative data.

Results

Overall, 25 subjects (42%) had OI (TDI < 25th percentile). The largest differences between subjects with and without OI were observed in discrimination and identification scores, with a large overlap in olfactory threshold. Subjects with an abnormal TDI showed significantly higher fat mass index, ISI scores and urinary neopterin and lower MMSE scores than those without OI. By multivariable logistic regression, MMSE, ISI score and urinary neopterin were significantly associated to OI.

Conclusions

Among middle-aged subjects with stage I and II obesity, OI is highly prevalent and is independently associated with poor self-reported sleep quality, lower cognition scores and higher levels of the inflammatory marker neopterin.

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Acknowledgement

We acknowledge the skillful secretarial assistance and patients flow management provided by Elisabetta Spagnolo.

Funding

This study was supported by Regione Lombardia-CNR 2016-2018 Framework Agreement, Grant 19364/RCC, AMANDA Project.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Renata De Maria.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

The study was approved by the Ethical Committee of Milano Area C.

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All participants provided their written informed consent.

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Campolo, J., Corradi, E., Rizzardi, A. et al. Correlates of olfactory impairment in middle-aged non-diabetic Caucasian subjects with stage I–II obesity. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 278, 2047–2054 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00405-020-06442-5

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Keywords

  • Olfaction
  • Obesity
  • Neopterin
  • Sleep disturbances
  • MiniMental state examination