Self-reported poor oral health and risk for gastrointestinal cancer

  • Jordão HW & al.
  • United European Gastroenterol J
  • 1 Nov 2019

  • curated by Sarfaroj Khan
  • UK Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • This study found no significant association between self-reported poor oral health and the risk for all gastrointestinal (GI) cancers.
  • However, self-reported poor oral health was significantly associated with increased risk for hepatobiliary cancer, particularly hepatocellular cancer.

Why this matters

  • Previous studies have shown inconsistent evidence for the association between poor oral health and specific types of gastrointestinal cancers, and this association varied significantly between different geographic settings and the development index of countries.

Study design

  • Data from the large, prospective UK Biobank cohort were analysed (n=475766)
  • All participants were followed from baseline to primary GI tumour diagnosis, death, withdrawal from the study or the end of follow-up.
  • Funding: None.

Key results

  • During a mean 6 years of follow-up, 4069 (0.9%) of 469,628 participants were diagnosed with GI cancer, of which 513 (13%) reported poor oral health.
  • After adjustment for confounders, self-reported poor oral health was not associated with risk for GI cancer (HR, 0.97; 95% CI, 0.89-1.07) and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (HR, 0.81; 95% CI, 0.43-1.53).
  • In a site-specific analysis, self-reported poor oral health was associated with increased risk for hepatobiliary cancer (HR, 1.32; 95% CI, 0.95-1.80), and the association was stronger for hepatocellular cancer (HR, 1.75; 95% CI, 1.04-2.92).

Limitations

  • Self-reported data.