Usefulness of Self-Reported Periodontal Disease to Identify Individuals With Elevated Inflammatory Markers at Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Published:September 17, 2008DOI:
      Periodontal disease has been associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD), and inflammation may represent a common pathophysiology. Oral health screening in the context of CVD risk assessment represents a potential opportunity to identify individuals at risk for CVD. The purposes of this study were to determine if self-reported oral health status is independently associated with inflammatory markers and if oral health assessment as part of CVD risk screening can identify at-risk individuals without traditional CVD risk factors. A baseline analysis was conducted among participants in the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's Family Intervention Trial for Heart Health (FIT Heart; n = 421, mean age 48 ± 13.5 years, 36% nonwhite) without CVD or diabetes who underwent standardized assessment of oral health, lifestyle, CVD risk factors, and the inflammatory markers high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2. Statistical associations between oral health, risk factors, and inflammatory markers were assessed, and logistic regression was used to adjust for effects of lifestyle and potential confounders. Periodontal disease was independently associated with being in the top quartile of lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 compared with the lower 3 quartiles (odds ratio 1.9, 95% confidence interval 1.1 to 3.2) after adjustment for lifestyle and risk factors. Histories of periodontal disease were reported by 24% of nonoverweight, nonhypertensive, nonhypercholesterolemic participants, and of these participants, 37% had elevated high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (≥3 mg/L) or lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (≥215 ng/ml) levels. In conclusion, self-reported periodontal disease is independently associated with inflammation and common in individuals without traditional CVD risk factors.
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