Recent reports have suggested that periodontal disease is a risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD). However, little is known about the relationship between periodontal disease and CHD in the very elderly. Therefore, we evaluated the association between tooth loss and abnormal ECG findings in octogenarians. Of the 1282 octogenarians in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, 697 participated. Oral examinations - including a tooth count and an assessment of the Community Periodontal Index - and a 12-lead ECG were performed. Logistic regression analysis revealed that individuals with < 20 teeth had increased prevalence of ST segment depression, and T-wave abnormalities, after we adjusted for gender, smoking, serum cholesterol and glucose, blood pressure, and body mass index. Compared with individuals with ≥ 20 teeth, edentulous individuals had an increased prevalence of T-wave abnormalities and arrhythmias after adjustment for coronary risk factors. We conclude that tooth loss may be an independent predictor of abnormal ECG findings in octogenarians.
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