Differences in the oral health status in hospitalised stroke patients according to swallowing function: A cross-sectional study

Fang Tian, Juan Li, Bei Wu, Rong Xiao, Jiru Liu, Jie Yu, Lin Liu, Rong Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Dysphagia is one of the common complications caused by stroke, leading to poor oral health. Oral health is often neglected after stroke by clinical care providers and the patients. Identifying the status of oral health in hospitalised stroke patients with swallowing disorders will facilitate the attention of clinical care providers. Aim: To investigate the differences in the oral health status between hospitalised post-stroke patients with dysphagia and non-dysphagia. Design: A cross-sectional study. Methods: A purposive sampling method was used to recruit participants. Participants included hospitalised post-stroke patients with dysphagia and without dysphagia. Stroke patients were recruited from the Department of Neurology, Guizhou Provincial People's Hospital in China. A total of 120 stroke patients completed the survey. The data collected included their demographics, the scores on the Oral Health Assessment Tool (OHAT), Geriatric Oral Health Assessment Index (GOHAI), and the Eating Assessment Tool-10 (EAT-10). The study was compliant with the STROBE checklist. Results: The average age of the dysphagia group was 67 (64~76) vs the participants without dysphagia group 67 (65~76), (p =.610). The mean standard deviation (SD) OHAT score of participants with dysphagia was 5.28 (2.33) compared to participants without dysphagia 8.89 (3.07), (p <.05). This result indicates post-stroke dysphagia (PSD) patients had worse oral health than stroke patients without dysphagia. Binary logistic regression analysis showed that oral health status was the independent influencing factor of swallowing function (p <.01). Conclusion: The participants with dysphagia had worse oral health status compared to those without dysphagia, illustrating the critical importance of improving attention to oral health management in patients with post-stroke swallowing disorders. Relevance to clinical practice: Oral health was often omitted when comparing to other functional impairments resulting from stroke. Health caregivers of post-stroke patients with dysphagia should be aware of the importance of evaluating patient’s oral condition and implementing oral care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1140-1147
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - Apr 2023


  • dysphagia
  • nursing
  • oral care
  • oral health
  • oral health assessment tool
  • oral hygiene
  • quality of life
  • stroke
  • swallowing disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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