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, 27 (4), 267-72

Is There a Relationship Between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Periodontal Disease?


Is There a Relationship Between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Periodontal Disease?

F Mercado et al. J Clin Periodontol.


Aim: The aim of this study was to determine whether there is a relationship between disease experience of rheumatoid arthritis and periodontal disease.

Methods: 1,412 individuals attending the University of Queensland's School of Dentistry were assessed for the prevalence of periodontal disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Analysis of data obtained from a self-reported health questionnaire and dental records was carried out and included: number of individuals referred for advanced periodontal care (test group); number of individuals attending for routine dentistry; determination of rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus through self-reporting and assessment of prescription medications; assessment of periodontal disease through assessment of existing oral radiographs.

Results: In patients referred for periodontal treatment, the prevalence of self-reported rheumatoid arthritis was 3.95% which is significantly higher than that seen in patients not referred for periodontal treatment (0.66%) and also that reported in the general population (1%). Of those referred patients with rheumatoid arthritis, 62.5% had advanced forms of periodontal disease. These results were mirrored in the results of the self-reported prevalence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus which was consistent with the published higher prevalence in periodontal patients.

Conclusions: Based on data derived from self-reported health conditions, and not withstanding the limitations of such a study, we conclude that there is good evidence to suggest that individuals with moderate to severe periodontal disease are at higher risk of suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and vice versa.

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