Examining a New Scale for Evaluating Taste in Children (TASTY).

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DOI: 10.5863/1551-6776-25.2.131


OBJECTIVES: Pediatric medication taste impacts adherence, and current recommendations advocate for direct input from pediatric patients on medication taste during drug development. However, the lack of a widely used, validated measurement tool limits taste assessments. This protocol examines the validity of, and preferences for, a newly created self-report taste rating scale designed with images centered on taste (TASTY), compared with 2 existing hedonic taste scales.

METHODS: This study was a prospective, single-center, randomized survey of child-parent dyads recruited from pediatric ambulatory care clinics and ancillary service waiting rooms. Parents facilitated the survey by identifying foods that they perceived their child would recall as pleasant, neutral, and unpleasant. Children were asked to rate each of the 3 food items on each of 3 different faces scales presented in random order. Parents and children were also asked which scale they preferred and why.

RESULTS: Ninety child-parent dyads completed this study (mean child age was 6.7 ± 2.9 years, 58% female). All 3 scales performed comparably with no significant differences (p > 0.05). However, concordance between parental assignment and child rankings was markedly lower in 3-year-olds (r < 0.4) and 4-year-olds (r < 0.6) than for children 5 years and older (r > 0.9). TASTY was preferred by both parents and children when compared with the other scales.

CONCLUSIONS: This novel hedonic taste scale for pediatric use is equally valid and preferred to comparable faces scales. The TASTY scale may be beneficial in developing standardized methodology for evaluating drug palatability.

Journal Title

J Pediatr Pharmacol Ther





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acceptability; hedonic scale; palatability; pediatrics; taste scale

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