Assessment of periodontal conditions and systemic disease in older subjects. II. Focus on cardiovascular diseases

J Clin Periodontol. 2002 Sep;29(9):803-10. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-051x.2002.290903.x.


Background: Panoramic radiographs (PMX)s may provide information about systemic health conditions.

Aims: i). To study clinical periodontal conditions and collect self-reported health status in a cohort of 1084 older subjects; ii). to study signs of alveolar bone loss and carotid calcification from panoramic radiographs obtained from these subjects; and iii). to study associations between study parameters.

Material and methods: PMXs from 1064 adults aged 60-75 (mean age 67.6, SD +/- 4.7) were studied. Signs of alveolar bone loss, vertical defects, and molar furcation radiolucencies defined periodontal status. Medical health histories were obtained via self-reports. Signs of carotid calcification were identified from panoramic radiographs.

Results: The PMX allowed assessment of 53% of the films (Seattle 64.5% and Vancouver 48.4%). A self-reported history of a stroke was reported by 8.1% of men in Seattle and 2.9% of men in Vancouver (P < 0.01). Heart attacks were reported by 12% of men in Seattle and 7.2% in Vancouver (N.S.). PMX evidence of periodontitis was found in 48.5% of the subjects, with carotid calcification in 18.6%. The intraclass correlation score for PMX findings of carotid calcification and stroke was 0.24 (95% CI: 0.10-0.35, P < 0.001). The odds ratio for PMX carotid calcification and periodontitis was 2.1 (95% CI: 1.3-3.2, P < 0.001), and for PMX carotid calcification and stroke 4.2 (95% CI: 1.9-9.1, P < 0.001). The associations disappeared when smoking was accounted for. A history of a heart attack was associated with stroke, gender, age, and PMX scores of alveolar bone loss.

Conclusions: PMXs may provide valuable information about both oral conditions and signs of carotid calcification, data that are consistent with self-reported health conditions. Alveolar bone loss as assessed from PMXs is associated with cardiovascular diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alveolar Bone Loss / complications*
  • Alveolar Bone Loss / diagnostic imaging
  • Alveolar Bone Loss / epidemiology
  • British Columbia / epidemiology
  • Calcinosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Carotid Artery Diseases / complications*
  • Carotid Artery Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Carotid Artery Diseases / epidemiology
  • Carotid Artery, Internal / diagnostic imaging
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Ethnicity
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment*
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Medical History Taking
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications*
  • Myocardial Infarction / epidemiology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Periodontitis / complications*
  • Periodontitis / diagnostic imaging
  • Periodontitis / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Radiography, Panoramic
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Stroke / complications*
  • Stroke / epidemiology
  • Washington / epidemiology