Taste Disorders (cont.)

How are taste disorders diagnosed?

Both taste and smell disorders are diagnosed by an otolaryngologist (sometimes called an ENT), a doctor of the ear, nose, throat, head, and neck. An otolaryngologist can determine the extent of your taste disorder by measuring the lowest concentration of a taste quality that you can detect or recognize. You may be asked to compare the tastes of different substances or to note how the intensity of a taste grows when a substance's concentration is increased.

Scientists have developed taste tests in which the patient responds to different chemical concentrations. This may involve a simple "sip, spit, and rinse" test, or chemicals may be applied directly to specific areas of the tongue.

An accurate assessment of your taste loss will include, among other things, a physical examination of your ears, nose, and throat; a dental examination and assessment of oral hygiene; a review of your health history; and a taste test supervised by a health care professional.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/1/2014

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