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AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2002 Oct;16(10):479-86.

Impact of intensified dental care on outcomes in human immunodeficiency virus infection.

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Center for Health Research, Kaiser Permanente, Portland, Oregon 97227-1110, USA.


This study evaluated the health effects of routine and intensified dental care and disease prevention in persons with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). We recruited 376 HIV-infected persons ages 19 to 61 with CD4 counts between 100 and 750 into a year-long two-arm randomized controlled trial. Control group subjects (n = 185) received professional dental protective treatment and checkups at baseline, 6 months, and 1 year, plus dental care. Enhanced care patients (n = 191) received bimonthly protective treatment and twice-daily chlorhexidine mouthrinses to treat gingivitis. Active decay, gingivitis, oral pain, impact of oral health on functioning, and global functional status improved in both groups. The mean depth of periodontal pockets decreased 0.18 mm (control group) versus 0.27 mm (enhanced group) (p < 0.04), as did an erythema index (-1.22 versus -1.78, p < 0.01). No effects on acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)-related complications, symptoms, or mortality were observed. We concluded that access to dental screening, prophylaxis, and repair will significantly improve oral health, functioning, and quality of life in persons with AIDS.

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