Field Survey Measures of Olfaction: The Olfactory Function Field Exam (OFFE)
Population-based field research on human olfaction has been limited by a lack of feasible assessment tools. Previous olfactory survey research has measured only odor identification, with no research being done on odor detection (i.e., a person’s sensitivity to detect a particular odor). Laboratory studies suggest that deficits in both aspects of olfactory function may be related to physical health, mental health and cognition, social function, including overall quality of life, and even mortality. However, field studies are needed to validate and extend these findings in large representative samples. Here we describe the olfactory function field exam, an instrument that can be deployed in field environments by lay interviewers to evaluate both odor identification and odor detection rapidly, practically, and accurately. Use of this new survey tool in future field-based population health studies will elucidate the impact of olfactory function on a myriad of health and social conditions.
Kern, D.W., Wroblewski, K.E., Schumm, L.P., Pinto, J.M., & McClintock, M.K. (2014). Field survey measures of olfaction: The Olfactory Function Field Exam (OFFE) [Abstract]. Psychology & Gerontology Faculty Publications. 11. http://neiudc.neiu.edu/psyc-pub/11