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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 142-146

Effect of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on parotid saliva flow in patients with hyposalivation

1 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, Ragas Dental College and Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Sree Balaji Dental College and Hospital, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
P Venkatalakshmi Aparna
No.12, Nagarathinam Nagar, Thiruneermalai Road, Kadaperi, West Tambaram, Chennai - 600 045, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jpbs.JPBS_124_17

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Context: In recent days, we have come across an increase incidence of dry mouth as a side effects of drugs and in order to bring an awareness about a simple non- invasive method to increase the salivary flow, we have used TENS which in many way is beneficial to patients with metabolic disorders. Aims and Objectives: The aim is to assess the effectiveness of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation on salivary gland function in patients with hyposalivation. Subjects and Methods: The present study included total of 25 subjects with complaint of hyposalivation. Written informed consent was obtained from all the participants. Subjects with pacemakers, autoimmune diseases, pregnancy, and history of salivary gland pathology were excluded from the study. Subjects were asked to refrain from eating, drinking, chewing gum, smoking, and oral hygiene procedures for at least 1 h before the appointment. Unstimulated saliva was collected using modified Carlson Crittenden cup placed over the Stenson's duct bilaterally for 5 min and measured. TENS pads were placed over the parotid region and were activated. The intensity control switch was adjusted for patient's comfort. The intensity was turned up 1 increment at a time at 5 s intervals until the optimal intensity level was reached and stimulated saliva was then collected for 5 min using the modified Carlson Crittenden cup and measured. Any increase in parotid salivary flow (SF) with electrostimulation was considered a positive finding. Statistical Analysis Used: A paired t-test, evaluating mean changes in stimulated versus unstimulated SF rates, was applied to look for statistically significant differences using PASW 18.0 for Windows. An independent sample t-test was performed to note difference between genders. Results: There was significant increase in parotid SF in 19 of 25 patients after transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. Males showed more salivary secretion when compared to females. Conclusions: From the results of the study and within limitations of the study, it can be concluded that TENS was effective in increasing the SF rate in hyposalivatory patients with residual saliva. TENS was less effective in patients who are under xerogenic drugs. Thus, TENS may be an ever-growing armamentarium in the management of salivary gland hypofunction when other therapies have failed or are contraindicated.

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