Oral candidiasis and Sjögren's syndrome

J Rheumatol. 1998 May;25(5):911-5.


Objective: To determine the prevalence of oral candidiasis (OC) in patients with Sjögren's syndrome (SS), to identify oral signs and symptoms associated with OC, and to compare them with a healthy group.

Methods: Patients with primary SS, and with SS associated with autoimmune disease were identified according to established criteria. Each individual had: (1) a questionnaire, (2) an oral clinical evaluation, (3) a set of microbiological tests: tongue smear, culture of tongue smear, and saliva sample. Diagnosis of OC was established with 2 positive results and the presence of any sign or symptom.

Results: A total of 81 subjects were studied, 21 with primary SS, 29 secondary SS, and 31 healthy subjects. We diagnosed OC in 74% of patients with SS, which was statistically significant compared to the healthy group (23%) p < 0.001. Frequent symptoms associated with OC were increased sensitivity to spicy foods (58%) and unpleasant metallic taste (40%). Common signs of OC were erythematous lesion on the dorsum of the tongue (68%) and angular cheilitis (24%).

Conclusion: Prevalence of OC was high in patients with SS. The frequency of signs and symptoms associated with OC may explain some of the clinical manifestations. If chronic erythematous OC is found in patients with SS an oral assessment at every appointment may help provide appropriate treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Candidiasis, Oral / complications*
  • Candidiasis, Oral / epidemiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / complications*
  • Xerostomia / etiology