Periodontal Diseases and Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes: Review of Two Decades of Clinical Research

Oral Health Prev Dent. 2021;19(1):77-83. doi: 10.3290/j.ohpd.b898969.


Purpose: The aim of this study was to review the literature and chart the clinical studies that have focused on periodontal diseases and adverse pregnancy outcomes since 1996. Materials and Methods: Medline, Cinahl, and Cochrane databases were searched for original studies focused on pregnancy outcomes and periodontal status in humans. The most recent search was conducted on April 30, 2020. Results: Of the 633 articles identified, 232 articles (n = 119,774 participants) were selected for analysis. The majority of studies highlighted a statistically significant association between periodontal diseases and preterm birth (71 of 111 articles; 63.96%), low birth weight (46 of 64 articles; 71.87%), preterm low birth weight (29 of 49 articles; 59.18%), preeclampsia (31 of 45 articles; 68.89%) and other pregnancy complications, such as preterm, prelabor rupture of membranes (17 of 26 articles; 65.38%). Geographical analysis revealed that clinical studies were conducted in 51 countries, primarily in the United States (42 studies, 18.10%), Brazil (33 studies, 14.22%) and India (25 studies, 10.78%). Irrespective of geographical location, analysis showed various degrees of evidence of a relationship between periodontal diseases and adverse pregnancy outcomes. Conclusion: The majority of the studies found a statistically significant link between periodontal diseases and some complications of pregnancy. The strength of such a link varies according to type of study, type of variable and outcome measure selected.

Keywords: adverse pregnancy outcomes; mapping; periodontal diseases; pregnancy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brazil
  • Female
  • Humans
  • India
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Periodontal Diseases* / complications
  • Periodontal Diseases* / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications* / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy Outcome / epidemiology
  • Premature Birth* / epidemiology