The effect of the duration of the dialysis in hemodialysis patients on dental and periodontal findings.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the dental and periodontal health status of patients on regular hemodialysis (HD) maintenance therapy, and the effect of duration of HD on oral status. Sixty-eight HD patients and 41 controls were examined. Decayed, Missing or Filled Teeth (DMFT index), plague index (PI), gingival index (GI), Probing pocket depth (PPD) and loss of periodontal attachment (LPA) were examined. Except DMFT index, significant differences were found in the other index values between patients and controls (P < 0.01). Dialysis duration significantly correlated not with DMFT but with the others. Also, DMFT values showed no significant differences between the five HD subgroups. For the PI, GI and PPD values, the first 5-year period revealed no significant variation, whereas the second 5-year period included significant increases. After 10 years, a much more significant increase was observed. The LPA values did not show any significant differences between the HD subgroups, but after 10 years a significant progressive increase can be observed. The dental and periodontal health is poor in HD patients and becomes worse with time on dialysis. Thus, oral health maintenance is of utmost importance in this patient group.