New York, Aug 1: Postmenopausal women who have a history of gum disease may be at increased risk of cancer, says a study.
“Our study was sufficiently large and detailed enough to examine not just overall risk of cancer among older women with periodontal disease, but also to provide useful information on a number of cancer-specific sites,” said the study’s senior author Jean Wactawski-Wende.
The study included 65,869 postmenopausal women average age of 68 and most were non-Hispanic white women.
Health questionnaire for participants were asked “Has a dentist or dental hygienist ever told you that you had periodontal or gum disease?”
14 per cent increased risk of overall cancer in women who are suffering with gum disease, according to the study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.
Esophageal and Gallbladder cancer risk are associated with periodontal disease, the researchers reported.
“The esophagus is in close proximity to the oral cavity, and so periodontal pathogens may more easily gain access to and infect the esophageal mucosa and promote cancer risk at that site,” Wactawski-Wende said.
“Chronic inflammation has also been implicated in gallbladder cancer, but there has been no data on the association between periodontal disease and gallbladder risk. Ours is the first study to report on such an association,” said Ngozi Nwizu, Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.
“Esophageal cancer ranks among the most deadly cancers and its etiology is not well known, but chronic inflammation has been implicated,” she said.