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Study: Poor oral health may increase liver cancer risk

By: Team Ifairer | Posted: 29-08-2019
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Study: Poor oral health may increase liver cancer risk
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The study, by researchers at Queen's University Belfast, analysed a large cohort of over 469,000 people in the UK, investigated the association between oral health conditions and the risk of a number of gastrointestinal cancers, including liver, colon, rectum and pancreatic cancer.

Models were applied to estimate the relationship between cancer risk and self-reported oral health conditions, such as painful or bleeding gums, mouth ulcers, and loose teeth. Whilst no significant associations were observed on the risk of the majority gastrointestinal cancers and poor oral health, a substantial link was found for hepatobiliary cancer.

"Poor oral health has been associated with the risk of several chronic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes," explained Dr Haydee WT Jordao, from the Centre of Public Health at Queen's University Belfast and lead author of the study. "However, there is inconsistent evidence on the association between poor oral health and specific types of gastrointestinal cancers, which is what our research aimed to examine," continued Dr Haydee.

Of the 469,628 participants, 4,069 developed gastrointestinal cancer during the (average) six-year follow up. In 13per cent of these cases, patients reported poor oral health. Participants with poor oral health were more likely to be younger, female, living in deprived socioeconomic areas and consumed less than two portions of fruit and vegetables per day.
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