Prostate : The Gum Disease-Prostate Connection

Treating gum disease may help reduce symptoms of prostate inflammation, a small study suggests.

Previous research shows a link between gum disease and prostatitis, or prostate inflammation. In a new study that included 27 men age 21 and older with prostatitis and moderate to severe gum disease, men who were treated for gum disease showed significant improvement in their gums within one to two months. And although they received no treatment for their prostatitis, symptoms of the condition improved in 21 of the 27 men after their gum disease was treated.

"This study shows that if we treat the gum disease, it can improve the symptoms of prostatitis and the quality of life for those who have the disease," stated study author Dr. Nabil Bissada, chair of periodontics at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, in a university news release.

Gum disease affects more than the mouth -- it also can cause inflammation in other parts of the body. Research also links gum disease with heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis.

Bissada said he wants to make gum disease treatment a standard part of treatment for an inflamed prostate, much like dental checkups are advised before heart surgery or for women who are pregnant or considering pregnancy.
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