General and Oral Health Center
Gum disease has been associated with preterm birth1. Two large studies found that up to 40% of pregnant women have some degree of gum disease2. Preliminary data suggest that treatment of gum disease during pregnancy may reduce the risk for preterm birth3. Other investigators have not demonstrated this risk reduction4, emphasizing the need for further research into understanding the link between maternal periodontal (gum) infection and adverse pregnancy outcome.
*Not currently enrolling for studies in this area-please check back at a later date.
1Offenbacher S, Boggess KA, Murtha AP, et al. Progressive periodontal disease and risk of
very preterm delivery. Obstet Gynecol 2006;107:29-36.
2Jeffcoat MK, Geurs NC, Reddy MS, Cliver SP, Goldenberg RL, Hauth JC. Periodontal infection and preterm birth: results of a prospective study. J Am Dent Assoc 2001;132:875-80.
3 Lopez NJ, Smith PC, Gutierrez J. Periodontal therapy may reduce the risk of preterm low birth weight in women with periodontal disease: a randomized controlled trial. J Periodontol 2002;73:911-24.
4 Michalowicz BS, Hodges JS, DiAngelis AJ, et al. Treatment of periodontal disease and the risk of preterm birth. N Engl J Med 2006; 355:1885-94.