Periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease (CVD) have been the focus of much research, but little is known about their roles in the recurrent event risk in patients with CVD. This study investigates whether periodontal disease is related to recurrent CVD events and mortality in survivors of incident myocardial infarction (MI).
Participants (668 males and 216 females; mean age: 54 + or - 8.5 years) were recruited (1997 through 2004) from two western New York county hospitals and completed an interviewer-administered questionnaire regarding lifestyle habits, clinical measurements, and a comprehensive dental examination. The periodontal disease status was measured by the mean clinical attachment loss (AL). Follow-up surveys assessed hospitalizations or medical procedures; cardiovascular events were validated by medical records. A National Death Index (NDI) Plus search was conducted. The outcome was recurrent fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular events (International Classification of Diseases codes 390 to 450).
After an average follow-up of 2.9 years, 154 events were reported. Among never-smokers, the adjusted hazard ratio (95% confidence interval) for the mean clinical AL (millimeters) was 1.43 (1.09 to 1.89). No associations were found in ever-smokers (clinical AL by smoking interaction: P <0.05).
These findings indicate that periodontal disease may be an important factor in determining recurrent cardiovascular events in MI patients and not merely a marker for the effects of cigarette smoking.