Poor oral health may be associated with POAG
Study raises possibility that systemic adverse effects may impact eye health
The proposed association between poor oral health and POAG derives from the shared factors of impaired blood flow and endothelial dysfunction, as well as the observation that treatment of periodontal disease has been shown to improve systemic blood flow and endothelial function, Dr. Kang said.
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“Therefore, we hypothesized that poor oral health, manifesting as periodontal disease and tooth loss, may be associated with POAG,” she said.
Although studies often evaluate both women and men, the investigators decided to use data from the male-only HPFS since oral health questions were asked much less frequently in a similar study in women (the Nurse’s Health Study).
“We speculate that there may not be large differences by gender, as periodontal disease has been associated with various systemic diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, certain cancers, and neurodegenerative diseases in a similar manner for men and women,” Dr. Kang said.
She added that some prior small studies have not observed any differences by gender.
1. Ophthalmology. 2016;123:2318-2327. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2016.07.014. Epub 2016 Aug 20.