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Year: 2022  Vol. 26   Num. 1  - Jan/Mar
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1719122
Original Article
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Olfactory Performance among Hospital Residents
Gustavo Lara Rezende, Max Sarmet, Gabrielle Everton Sousa, Felipe Carneiro Krier, Diderot Rodrigues Parreira, Selma Aparecida Kuckelhaus
Key words:
olfactory test - dysosmia - residents - health workers

Introduction Smell plays an important role in the maintenance of health and quality of life of the general population. Health workers with olfactory impairment may not be able to help diagnose certain diseases, and subsequently increase the risk of hazardous events and mortality among those affected. 'Odor learning' requires repeated experiences with different smells to develop a discriminatory ability, and this is a process that takes years. Because of that, physicians of certain medical specialities have better odor detection than others. Objective To study the olfactory performance and associated factors of otorhinolaryngology residents compared with residents of different medical specialities in a representative sample of a tertiary hospital. Methods The University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) was used to compare olfactory performance. Clinical and epidemiological data were collected among 42 hospital residents. Results Otorhinolaryngology residents presented an average UPSIT score of 35.0, and the other residents, a score of 32.8 (p = 0.02) Of all the residents, 40.5% showed some grade of olfactory impairment. Half of the females students in the first year of residency showed olfactory dysfunction. The multivariate analyses found age (p = 0.03; 95% confidence interval for β = 0.33) to be an independent predictor of the UPSIT score. Conclusion The present study demonstrated that otorhinolaryngology residents have greater olfactory capacity compared with other residents. Future studies should explore the relevant factors of olfactory impairment and its impact on quality of life in this population.



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