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The influence of intolerance of uncertainty on the correlation between the severity of symptoms and satisfaction with oral state in patients with burning mouth syndrome



Intolerance of uncertainty (IU) is thought to be involved with the psychological factors that influence the symptoms in patients with burning mouth syndrome (BMS) and affect their limited satisfaction with the treatments provided. However, the influence of IU on satisfaction has not been explored in detail. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate whether IU can affect the satisfaction of patients with BMS.


A total of 34 patients with BMS and 100 patients without the disease who visited the general dental clinic were included in the study. They were required to complete a questionnaire measuring the subjective severity of their symptoms and satisfaction with their oral state, and a short IU scale. The BMS patients were separated from the control patients based on the IU score. The coefficients between the severity of symptoms and satisfaction were calculated to examine the influence of IU on the relationship between the two variables.


The relationship between satisfaction and severity of symptoms was significant in BMS patients with high IU, but not in control patients with low IU.


This study demonstrated that IU in BMS patients influences the relationship between the severity of symptoms and the satisfaction, thus indicating that the dissatisfaction in BMS patients with high IU might be prevented by decreasing the IU.

Clinical relevance

Limited satisfaction experienced by BMS patients can influence the patient-doctor relationship. This study provides suggestions for building a good patient-doctor relationship.

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This study was supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Grant Numbers JP17K04434.

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Correspondence to Hirofumi Matsuoka.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This study was approved by the ethical committee of the Health Sciences University of Hokkaido Hospital (No. 2016-026).

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Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Utsunomiya, M., Matsuoka, H., Takenoshita, M. et al. The influence of intolerance of uncertainty on the correlation between the severity of symptoms and satisfaction with oral state in patients with burning mouth syndrome. Clin Oral Invest (2022).

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  • Burning mouth syndrome
  • Satisfaction
  • Intolerance uncertainty
  • Severity of oral symptom