The impact on dentistry of recent advances in the management of hypertension

Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod. 2000 Nov;90(5):591-9. doi: 10.1067/moe.2000.109517.


Dentistry has played an important role in the detection of patients with hypertension. Patients found to have high blood pressure at or beyond defined levels should be referred for a medical diagnosis and indicated treatment. Once the hypertensive condition is under control, oral and dental evaluation and treatment can be initiated. Beginning in 1976, the percentage of the general population in the United States with undetected hypertension declined steadily. However, this decline reversed, beginning in 1994. In addition, fewer than 50% of the patients who are aware of their hypertension have it medically under control. Thus, a significant number of patients with undetected high blood pressure or uncontrolled hypertension today are seeking dental treatment. These patients are at high risk for significant complications such as stroke, heart disease, kidney disease, and retinal disease. Those with very high blood pressure are at great risk for acute medical problems when receiving dental treatment. For those reasons, dentistry must continue to place an emphasis on the detection and referral of patients with high blood pressure. In addition, increased numbers of medically compromised patients are seeking dental treatment who should have their blood pressure monitored during the more stressful dental procedures, such as oral surgery, periodontal surgery, and placement of dental implants. This article reviews the recent advances in the dental and medical management of hypertension. It is important for dentists to be aware of hypertension in relation to the practice of dentistry.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antihypertensive Agents* / adverse effects
  • Blood Pressure Monitoring, Ambulatory
  • Dental Care for Chronically Ill*
  • Gingival Hyperplasia / chemically induced
  • Humans
  • Hypertension* / diagnosis
  • Hypertension* / therapy
  • Lichen Planus, Oral / chemically induced
  • Patient Compliance


  • Antihypertensive Agents