Taste and Smell
Taste And Medication Use
Medications may cause a pronounced taste loss or taste distortion. Many drugs prescribed for older adults, such as angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, used in the treatment of high blood pressure, can bind to zinc. An unpleasant taste in the mouth is one of the main factors limiting use of the ACE-inhibitor captopril. Penicillamine, sometimes used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, also binds metals and interferes with taste perception. Diuretics, which reduce blood pressure by increasing urine output, have occasionally been associated with a loss of taste. Among the known side effects of antiglaucoma agents are changes in taste. Nicotine patches may interfere with taste perception, perhaps because they reduce salivary flow. Radiation treatment for oral cancer frequently directly damages salivary glands and thus can reduce taste function.
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