Impaired eating-related quality of life in chronic rhinosinusitis

Nicholas R. Rowan, Zachary M. Soler, Kristina A. Storck, Florence Othieno, Kimia G. Ganjaei, Timothy L. Smith, Rodney J. Schlosser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background: Despite the tremendous burden of smell and taste dysfunction in patients with chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS), objective measures of smell and taste fail to fully account for eating-related disruptions in CRS patient quality of life (QOL). In this study we sought to investigate the driving force behind impaired eating-related QOL in CRS patients. Methods: Adult CRS patients were prospectively enrolled and answered a series of surveys relating to smell, taste, overall sinus-specific QOL, and depression. Patients with both smell-related and taste-related eating complaints were considered to have impaired eating-related QOL. Clinical demographics, objective chemosensory scores, and endoscopy scores were collected. Results: Seventy patients were enrolled and 23% showed impaired eating-related QOL. In multivariable analyses, patients with aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease (AERD) showed 10.7 times higher odds of impaired eating-related QOL (odds ratio [OR] 10.72; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.09 to 105.09; p = 0.042); meanwhile, for every 1-point increase in depression scores, the odds of impaired eating-related QOL increased by 1.3 (OR 1.31; 95% CI, 1.10 to 1.57; p = 0.003). For every 1-point decrease in orthonasal olfactory threshold, the odds of impaired eating-related QOL increased by 1.9 times (OR 1.85; 95% CI, 1.14 to 3.00; p = 0.013). Symptom scores, polyp status, endoscopic scores, and other olfactory measures did not remain significant after adjusting for other variables in forward-selection multivariable modeling. Conclusion: Disruptions in eating-related QOL cannot be fully explained by objective smell or taste testing alone. We identified AERD and depression as independent risk factors for greater odds of impaired eating-related QOL in CRS. Improved orthonasal threshold scores were independently associated with better eating-related QOL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)240-247
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Forum of Allergy and Rhinology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • chronic rhinosinusitis
  • olfaction disorders
  • quality of life
  • taste
  • taste perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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