Dental Problems

Are Periodontal Disease and Pancreatic Cancer Related

Pancreatic cancer is of the most common cancer types in United States. Nearly 30,000 people are detected with this cancer every year, though early detection is very difficult of this type of cancer. Heart disease is already known to be linked with pancreatic cancer. But research now has found a link between diseases caused by bad oral health/Periodontal Disease and pancreatic cancer. This article tries to gain further insight.

Knowledge Gained from Research about the Nexus:

  • A research study was conducted by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health.
  • Researchers wanted to study the link between bad oral health and pancreatic cancer.
  • 216 pancreatic cancer patients participated in the study. 67 of them had Periodontal Disease.
  • The study was carried out for 16 years from 1986 to 2002.
  • The study found that people with bad oral health diseases are 63% prone to getting pancreatic cancer.

Possible Explanation of the Link between Periodontal Disease and Pancreatic Cancer:

  • People with bad oral health and habits have cuts and swellings in the mouth.
  • According to Dr. Dominique Michaud, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at Harvard, people suffering from bad oral health disease have high levels of a chemical called C-reactive protein in the mouth’s blood.
  • The presence of this chemical rises in our body whenever there are cuts and swellings in the body.
  • Researchers believe that this chemical is a biomarker and promotes cancer cells in the organ pancreas.
  • A substance is called biomarker when it can be used as a factor to find out the stage of a disease or effectiveness of a treatment.
  • High levels of C-reactive protein’s presence in the mouth’s blood indicate higher risks of getting pancreatic cancer.
  • Another possible reason for the link is that these people have increased level of carcinogens in their mouth.
  • Carcinogens are substances which can cause cancer or possess the potential to increase the risk of cancer.

1 response to Are Periodontal Disease and Pancreatic Cancer Related

  1. Also, bacteria have more entry point to enter the blood stream if you have periodontal disease