Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Research Finds Link Between Gum Disease, Acute Heart Attacks

Date:
November 13, 2000
Source:
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill
Summary:
Heart attack survivors who suffer advanced gum disease show significantly higher levels of a protein in their blood called C-reactive protein (CRP) than such patients without gum disease, new University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill research indicates.

CHAPEL HILL -- Heart attack survivors who suffer advanced gum disease show significantly higher levels of a protein in their blood called C-reactive protein (CRP) than such patients without gum disease, new University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill research indicates.

The findings, presented Sunday (Nov. 12) during a news conference at the annual American Heart Association meeting in New Orleans, suggest that the presence of gum disease might increase the risk of a second heart attack in people with a history of heart disease.

"Not only did the heart attack patients with periodontal disease have higher levels of CRP than those without gum disease, but the CRP levels were directly related to the severity of the gum disease," said Dr. Efthymios N. Deliargyris, an interventional cardiologist and a member of the Center for Oral and Systemic Diseases at UNC-CH. "The more severe the gum disease, the higher the CRP levels."

Besides Deliargyris, also an instructor in medicine at the UNC-CH School of Medicine, study investigators were Drs. Steven Offenbacher, professor of periodontology and center director, James D. Beck, professor of dental ecology, both at the UNC-CH School of Dentistry, and Sidney C. Smith Jr., chief of cardiology and past president of the American Heart Association.

"We know a lot of risk factors for heart attacks, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and cigarette smoking, but all those combined only explain about two-thirds of heart attacks," Deliargyris said. "Since about a third of people who suffer heart attacks don't have those risk factors, there's a wide search going on for other conditions that may contribute to increased risk."

Studies at UNC-CH and elsewhere have linked periodontal disease -- an advanced form of gingivitis -- with increased risk of heart attacks, but it has been unclear what the two conditions have in common, the physician said.

"The one thing we know the two conditions share is that they tend to initiate an immune response, also called an inflammatory response, in the body," he said. "The most common marker for this response is this C-reactive protein, which is considered predictive of future adverse events like heart attack." To learn how common severe gum disease was in heart attack victims, the UNC-CH team conducted their pilot study of 38 heart attack patients and matched them with a comparable group of 38 other people without known heart disease. Researchers found a high percentage of the former had periodontal disease -- 85 percent -- as compared with only 29 percent of the controls.

"The most exciting finding was that among people with a heart attack, those with periodontal disease had much higher CRP levels than those with a heart attack but no periodontal disease," Deliargyris said. "It seems that the presence of periodontal disease on top of a heart attack has a synergistic effect and a very accentuated CRP release."

Despite its small size, the study findings are the first of their kind and potentially very important, he said.

"This gives us an insight into possible mechanisms underlying the association between gum disease and heart disease," Deliargyris said. "Now we believe that patients with a heart attack and periodontal disease have an exaggerated inflammatory response with higher CRP levels that might put them at risk for future heart attacks. This work also raises the possibility that by treating severe gum disease in people with heart attacks, we might be able to reduce their CRP levels and their risk of another heart attack."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "New Research Finds Link Between Gum Disease, Acute Heart Attacks." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 November 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001113071724.htm>.
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. (2000, November 13). New Research Finds Link Between Gum Disease, Acute Heart Attacks. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001113071724.htm
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "New Research Finds Link Between Gum Disease, Acute Heart Attacks." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/11/001113071724.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

West Africa Gripped by Deadly Ebola Outbreak

AFP (July 28, 2014) The worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola epidemic grips west Africa, killing hundreds. Duration: 00:48 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins