We describe a simple, reproducible, and low-cost test for xerostomia, which involves chewing on a folded sterile sponge for 2 minutes. Saliva production is quantitated by weighing the sponge before and after chewing. Normal control subjects produced greater than or equal to 2.75 gm of saliva in 2 minutes. Three of 32 consecutive, unselected outpatients in allergy-immunology clinics and 9 of 38 patients in rheumatology clinics had decreased saliva production, which was significantly different compared with controls (P less than 0.01). The presence of sicca symptoms was highly correlated with quantitatively abnormal tear and saliva production, according to the results of the Saxon and Schirmer's tests.