Cancer causing cells growing in the mouth

Periodontal Disease and Pancreatic Cancer Link


For many years, researchers have been studying the link between oral health and cancer, but more specifically, the connection between periodontal disease (an inflammation of the gum tissue and surrounding bone) and cancer. Several of these studies are summarized in the Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology, which explains that periodontal disease leads to the growth and migration of cells containing cytokines, prostaglandins and other enzymes, which can cause cancer to evolve in various organs.


A 2007 study by the Harvard School of Public Health and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute concluded that men diagnosed with periodontal disease had a 63 percent higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer than those who didn’t have periodontal disease. One possible reason is that the chronic inflammation of periodontal disease raises the level of systemic inflammation throughout the body, promoting the growth of cancerous cells. In addition, people with periodontal disease typically have high levels of oral bacteria and carcinogenic nitrosamines, possibly setting the stage for pancreatic cancer.

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