Objective: To study presence of microorganisms associated with caries, gingivitis, oral opportunistic infections, and extent of hyposalivation in dentate patients with primary and secondary Sjögren's syndrome (SS).
Methods: An oral clinical examination was performed. The salivary flow was measured and a rinsing sample analyzed for presence of specific microorganisms. The results were compared to those of healthy controls matched for sex, age, and number of teeth.
Results: In patients with undetectable salivary flow at rest, mean number and proportion of mutans streptococci and lactobacilli showed a tendency to be increased, as well as the frequency of Candida. They also displayed an increased proportion of filled surfaces. In contrast, gingivitis and the numbers of microorganisms associated with gingivitis were comparable to those found in the healthy controls.
Conclusion: Patients with SS and severe hyposalivation harbor oral flora associated with the development of caries and frequent presence of retention sites, indicating a need for efficient preventive dental care.