Pre-term Birth and Periodontal disease- A Relationship Back in Focus

The recent two reports about the relation between preterm birth and periodontal status has again strengthened the relationship though it doesn’t seem to be causal. The first report is from the Offenbacher group from North Carolina. The results of the study show that the preterm group had lower maternal immunoglobulin G antibody and higher red and orange complex. The change in the microflora of pregnant women is long known to be due to the change in the hormone levels in the body, but with the new findings of increased levels of P. gingivalis, Tannerella forsythia, Prevotella intermedia, and Prevotella nigrescens in preterm group. (Abstract here)

The second study found a significant correlation between the education level, previous preterm birth and periodontal disease. It could be understood that socioeconomic conditions is associated with e poor oral hygiene, but this study went ahead to prove this and correlate it with preterm birth and periodontal disease. The non treated group with periodontal disease had significant cases of pre term low weight babies (79%) as compared to the healthy group or the treated periodontal disease group. (Abstract here)

These two studies have certainly changed the trend of the diminishing interest in the field of preterm birth and periodontal disease correlation, and have also provided new perspective for scientists every where to look into and explore.


1. Persistently High Levels of Periodontal Pathogens Associated With Preterm Pregnancy Outcome.Dongming Lin, Kevin Moss, James D. Beck, Arthur Hefti, Steven Offenbacher

Journal of Periodontology May 2007, Vol. 78, No. 5: 833-841.

2. Evaluation of the Incidence of Preterm Low Birth Weight in Patients Undergoing Periodontal Therapy. Catia M. Gazolla, Adair Ribeiro, Marcos R. Moysés, Luiz A.M. Oliveira, Luciano J. Pereira, Antônio W. Sallum

Journal of Periodontology May 2007, Vol. 78, No. 5: 842-848.

1 comment:

Teresa Duncan said...

Hi there! I just wanted to let you know that the most recent Journal of Periodontology has published a study that found P. gingivalis in amniotic fluid.


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