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Eur J Neurol. 2013 Jul;20(7):1053-9. doi: 10.1111/ene.12103. Epub 2013 Feb 9.

Association between multiple sclerosis and chronic periodontitis: a population-based pilot study.

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Department of Neurology, Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.



The pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS) is still not fully understood, but multiple infections are known to be crucial in the development of the disease. Periodontitis caused by periodontopathic polymicrobial infections is among the most common chronic infectious disorders. This case-control study aimed to investigate the association between chronic periodontitis (CP) and MS using a population-based dataset in Taiwan.


This study included 316 cases who had a diagnosis of MS and 1580 randomly selected controls. We performed conditional logistic regressions to investigate the association between MS and having been previously diagnosed with CP.


The results reveal that the prevalence of earlier CP was 25.6% and 15.4% for cases and controls, respectively (P < 0.001). Conditional logistic regression analysis revealed that cases were 1.86 [95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.39-2.48] times as likely as controls to have been previously diagnosed with CP, after adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics as well as hyperlipidemia, hypertension, coronary heart disease, alcohol abuse/alcohol-dependence syndrome, tobacco use disorder and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. After analyzing by gender, it was realized that while female cases had a higher chance than female controls of having earlier CP (adjusted odds ratio = 2.08; 95% CI = 1.49-2.95), there was no statistical association detected between these two conditions in men.


This study provides evidence for an association between CP and MS in female, but not male, subjects. Further epidemiological studies are needed to confirm the association and gender-specific differences found in the present study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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