Is Sjögren's syndrome a cause for dry eyes and dry mouth in the elderly?

Ibtisam Al-Hashimi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Dry mouth and dry eyes are common symptoms among the elderly, and they are the cardinal features of Sjögren's syndrome. In the elderly, both symptoms are often attributed to aging and medications without considering the possibility of underlying disease. Sjögren's syndrome is a multisystem exocrinopathy with a broad spectrum of exocrine and nonexocrine involvement; consequently, its initial clinical manifestations may appear unrelated and can be easily overlooked by both patients and healthcare providers. However, complications of Sjögren's syndrome can be disabling and compromising for patients' health and quality of life. Owing to the broad spectrum of systems that are affected by Sjögren's syndrome, its management requires a multidisciplinary approach and collaboration between healthcare providers, including primary-care physicians, rheumatologists, ophthalmologists, dentists and often other specialists, to ensure an optimal health outcome. This review provides an overview of Sjögren's syndrome with emphasis on clinical manifestations, diagnosis and management in order to minimize potentially life-threatening complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)535-549
Number of pages15
JournalAging Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2009


  • Aging
  • Dry eyes
  • Dry mouth
  • Elderly
  • Exocrine glands
  • Extraglandular
  • Population growth
  • Sjögren's syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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