No association between periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia found


Periodontal disease has been linked with a number of general health conditions and we recently covered the review which noted that the evidence does not support an association between periodontal disease and atherosclerotic vascular disease.  This multicentre case control study is the latest published study to look at the link between periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia.

What did they do 

They defined pre-eclampsia as blood pressure ≥ 140/90 mm Hg and ≥ 1 + proteinuria after 20 weeks of gestation.

Periodontitis was defined as the presence of four or more sites with a probing depth (PD) ≥ 5 mm and a clinical attachment loss (CA loss) ≥ 3 mm at the same site

They recruited 92 preeclamptic women and 245 controls.

 They found

  • 18.5 % periodontal disease in preeclamptic women and 19.2 % in non-preeclamptic women (crude OR 0.96, 95%CI 0.52-1.77).
  •  After adjusting for confounding variables, periodontitis remained not associated with preeclampsia (adjusted OR = 1.13, 95% CI: 0.59- 2.17).

 They concluded

This study does not support the hypothesis of an association between periodontal disease and preeclampsia.

Taghzouti N, Xiong X, Gornitsky M, Chandad F, Voyer R, Gagnon G, Leduc L, Xu H, Tulandi T, Wei B, Sénécal J, Velly AM, Salah MH, Fraser WD. Periodontal Disease is Not Associated With Preeclampsia in Canadian Pregnant Women. J Periodontol. 2011 Dec 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 22191787.


A basic PubMed search ( using the terms ‘preeclampsia’and Periodont*) identifies 62 studies and 5 reviews. Each of the reviews suggest an association between periodontitis and pre-eclampsia and/or other adverse pregnancy outcomes.

Matevosyan NR. Periodontal disease and perinatal outcomes. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2011 Apr;283(4):675-86. Epub 2010 Dec 1. PubMed PMID: 21120511.

Kunnen A, van Doormaal JJ, Abbas F, Aarnoudse JG, van Pampus MG, Faas MM. Periodontal disease and pre-eclampsia: a systematic review. J Clin Periodontol.2010 Dec;37(12):1075-87. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-051X.2010.01636.x. Review. PubMedPMID: 21070324.

Conde-Agudelo A, Villar J, Lindheimer M. Maternal infection and risk of lampsia: systematic review and metaanalysis. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2008 Jan;198(1):7-22. Review. PubMed PMID: 18166297.

Xiong X, Buekens P, Vastardis S, Yu SM. Periodontal disease and pregnancy outcomes: state-of-the-science. Obstet Gynecol Surv. 2007 Sep;62(9):605-15.PubMed PMID: 17705886.

Xiong X, Buekens P, Fraser WD, Beck J, Offenbacher S. Periodontal disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes: a systematic review. BJOG. 2006 Feb;113(2):135-43.Review. PubMed PMID: 16411989.



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Derek Richards

Derek Richards is a specialist in dental public health, Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Dentistry and Specialist Advisor to the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) Development Team. A former editor of the Evidence-Based Dentistry Journal and chief blogger for the Dental Elf website until December 2023. Derek has been involved with a wide range of evidence-based initiatives both nationally and internationally since 1994. Derek retired from the NHS in 2019 remaining as a part-time senior lecturer at Dundee Dental School until the end of 2023.

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