Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Surprising new study shows periodontal disease affects young adults, boosts pregnancy problems

21.09.2005


Periodontal disease -- a progressive, eventually painful and disruptive condition in which bacteria attack gums and the hidden roots of teeth -- develops much earlier than dentists and other health professionals thought, a major new study concludes.



Clinicians found a significant proportion of young adult patients examined had well-established periodontal disease despite no signs or symptoms. Affected pregnant women faced more than twice the risk of preterm birth and other pregnancy complications as unaffected women, the research also revealed.

Data from the unique set of clinical studies, conducted at the universities of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Kentucky were released Tuesday (Sept. 20) at a news conference during the annual meeting of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons in Boston.


As part of a continuing group of related investigations, the research is the first in-depth look over time at the condition in wisdom teeth -- the four rearmost teeth in the head and jaw, also known as third molars -- in young adults.

"About seven years ago, we were asked to spearhead a series of clinical trials to look at what happens if you keep your wisdom teeth and what happens if you have them taken out," said study leader Dr. Raymond P. White Jr., former dean and Dalton L. McMichael professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery at the UNC School of Dentistry.

"Part of the reason was that research at UNC and elsewhere showed that the inflammation in the mouth that periodontal infections cause promoted inflammation in other parts of the body, which contributed in significant ways to coronary artery disease, stroke, kidney disease and obstetric complications," White said. "Another reason was that there has been an increased emphasis on evidence-based medicine over the past decade or so."

The team collected baseline data on about 400 people who planned to keep their wisdom teeth. Researchers now have more than two years of follow-up information on 254 of them and plan to continue the work for at least five years.

"That a quarter of patients in their 20s had periodontal problems with no symptoms was a surprise to us since most people assumed that you don’t get periodontal problems until you are 35 or 40," White said. "But nobody had looked at wisdom teeth systematically before in a large study like this."

In the evaluation of data from 1,020 higher-risk obstetrics patients enrolled in a National Institutes of Health-sponsored clinical trial, 18 percent delivered preterm, he said. Wisdom teeth were a major contributor to the young women’s periodontal disease, and the severity of their disease clearly corresponded with the risk of preterm delivery. It also corresponded with indicators of systemic inflammation, such as elevated C-reactive protein, a substance produced by the liver in response to inflammation anywhere in the body.

Women with the worst periodontal disease around their 3rd molars had more than twice the risk of preterm birth, researchers found. The danger to pregnant women was comparable to the risks of smoking during pregnancy, the surgeon added. Since untreated periodontal disease in effect "seeds" the bloodstream with disease-causing bacteria, it’s important that dentists, obstetricians and other physicians assess wisdom teeth when examining young adults, he said.

"Although most people eventually will develop pathology with wisdom teeth, periodontal disease, pericoronitis or tooth decay, it is too early to recommend strongly that everyone has their wisdom teeth removed," White said. "It is a good idea to have your 3rd molars evaluated before age 25. But since a quarter of people will never have problems with them, a lot depends on how risk-averse one is as to whether their third molars with no detected pathology should be extracted as a precaution."

Besides White, lead clinical investigators were Drs. George H. Blakey, associate clinical professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery, and Steven Offenbacher, ORA Pharma Distinguished professor of periodontics, both at UNC; Dr. Richard H. Haug, professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery and assistant dean of dentistry at Kentucky; and Dr. Robert D. Marciani, chief of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Cincinnati’s College of Medicine.

Support for the research came from the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Foundation, the Dental Foundation of North Carolina and the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.

David Williamson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.unc.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

nachricht Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

First Juno science results supported by University of Leicester's Jupiter 'forecast'

26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>