Stability of unstimulated and stimulated whole saliva flow rates in children

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To analyze the stability of the unstimulated saliva flow rate (USFR) and the stimulated saliva flow rate (SSFR) in children followed from age 7 to 12 years old.


Longitudinal study. Whole saliva samples were collected from school children (50 girls and 50 boys). Forty-four girls and 32 boys remained in this cohort for 6 years (dropout rate 24%). Variables that could influence USFR or SSFR patterns were analyzed in a repeated-measures manova.


Over a 6-year follow-up, the children's USFR ranged from 0.41 to 0.46 mL/min in the initial and final observation, respectively, and showed no significant differences (P = 0.4455) during the follow-up. The children consistently belonged to one of three distinct SSFR groups (P < 0.0001). A repeated-measures manova model showed that USFR and SSFR were not associated with sex, body mass index, or indoor temperature during sampling.


These results indicate that USFR and SSFR patterns were stable from 7 to 12 years old. This finding may be useful in oral health prevention or treatment and in the search for biomarkers in saliva for screening or diagnostic purposes.

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