Cancer Risk in Older Women with Periodontal Disease

21st August 2017 | Posted by: Louise Burgess

Recent research highlights that periodontal disease in older women increases their risk of developing several types of cancer.

These cancers included oesophageal cancer, breast cancer and cancer of the gallbladder. The team investigated the association between gum disease and cancer in women. This is said to be the first time research has reviewed these potential links, particularly in women. Other studies show that women are more likely to develop breast cancer if they have gum disease; this research studied the impact gum disease generally has on cancer risk.

Research links gum disease with gallbladder cancer

The research confirmed the findings of earlier studies and discovered new connections, particularly linking gum disease with gallbladder cancer. This research is in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

The study showed that women diagnosed with periodontal disease had a 14% risk increase of developing some type of cancer. Cancer most commonly associated with gum disease is Oesophageal Cancer. Women with periodontitis are three times more likely to develop cancer compared with women good oral health. Dr Wactawski-Wande explains the oral cavity periodontal pathogens can easily infect the oesophageal mucosa.

This is because oral cavity and oesophagus are close, increasing the risk of oesophagus cancer.

The study also reveals a strong link between women who smoked and breast cancer, lung cancer, gallbladder cancer and gum disease. This link was particularly evident in gallbladder cancer and cancer of the oesophagus.

The research of the periodontitis and gallbladder cancer link is a new lead from the study findings. Dr Ngozi Nwizu from the University of Texas School of Dentistry in Houston, TX. Dr Nwizu explains: “Chronic inflammation has also been implicated in gallbladder cancer. There has been no data on the association between periodontal disease and gallbladder risk. Ours is the first study to report on such an association”.

Currently, there is no known research on the causes of oesophagus cancer. The team working on this study hope that the new research will be a huge step forward in the progression and understanding of oesophagus cancer, and it’s makeup.

Your oral health at SpaDental

At SpaDental our experienced team of dentists, hygienists and therapists deliver high-quality dentistry, using the latest techniques and equipment, to make sure your oral health stays in top condition.

We encourage you to see us regularly so we can monitor your oral health, treat any problems that may arise and let you know the best way to care for your mouth and teeth.

Discuss and plan your treatment with your clinician to ensure that you are informed of your options. In routine examinations, we check if you need any further treatment, monitor existing dental work and look for signs of periodontal disease and oral cancer. We also recommend that you see the hygienist who can professionally clean your teeth, working closely with your dentist to keep a watchful eye on your oral health.

You might also be interested in:


SpaDental Whitchurch dentist "kind and gentle"

A new patient testimonial After the closure of my local dentist in Whitchurch I telephoned Spa Dental who made me an appointment. Unfortunately I had an abscess on my tooth before my appointment date, for which I was given an emergency appointment.   I am a very nervous patient and it took a long time to build confidence with my old dentist , therefore my nerves were bad and I was in pain arriving for my appointment.  This…

More Testimonials

Plymouth dentists "excellent care" and "professional service"

Kind words from our patients mean a lot to us. Thank you! We're very happy to read reviews that commend the  Plymouth team and the dentists "excellent care" and "professional service". Recent patient reviews commend our excellent care: "In safe and caring hands - Without exception the treatment I have received has been outstanding. From the reception staff through each of the individuals involved, their focus is on you and you're fully involved in any…

More Testimonials

Fantastic Saltash patient reviews - thank you!

We very much enjoyed reading the lovely Saltash patient reviews we've received in response to our recent request for feedback. On behalf of all the staff, thank you so much for your lovely comments. We sincerely appreciate your kind words, and will also use your recommendations in our planning. SpaDental considers your review comments carefully. We read them all, and use the information we gather to guide our practice so we can keep on improving…

More Testimonials

Thank you for SpaDental Chard patient reviews

A very appreciative thank you to our patients from the clinicians and staff at SpaDental Chard. It has been a pleasure reading your comments because if our patients are happy, then we're happy. Feedback about the team and treatment from SpaDental Chard reviews "Everyone in the practice is efficient, professional and knowledgeable." - HCG  "5 Star Dental Care - Being in the centre of Chard, [the SpaDental] surgery is easily accessible for most patients. The…

More Testimonials

Plymouth patient reviews and suggestions - thank you!

SpaDental Plymouth sincerely thanks everyone who responds to our request to review the practice. We love reading all your positive comments. That said, we also take on board the suggestions you make. Because we take Plymouth patient reviews seriously, we read them carefully to see if anyone is less than satisfied with their experience and we use that information to guide our practice. Our review rating of 4.7 stars (out of 5) highlights Plymouth patient…

More Testimonials

Reviews Tewkesbury - thank you for your appreciation.

This last week we asked our patients who have visited the practice in the last few months to submit their comments online. We truly appreciate your kind comments. Thank you from all of us for your lovely reviews. Read about our new treatment for patients who have breathing difficulties while they're sleeping. Your opinion is important. Amongst other questions, we ask patients whether or not they would recommend the surgery to their family and friends.…

More Testimonials

Here to support service veterans - SpaDental Plymouth

"This was my first dental appointment since leaving the Armed Forces two years ago, and having left it far too long I eventually thought I ought to try to get myself an NHS dentist. Recognizing the unique challenges that veterans face when they leave the military, Spa Dental's veterans policy enabled me to get an initial appointment and receive treatment as an NHS patient - exactly what I'd hoped for. The professionalism and friendliness of…

More Testimonials

"Absolutely delighted" with veneers - SpaDental Whitchurch, Shropshire

A glowing testimonial for Dental Surgeon - veneers SpaDental Whitchurch Shropshire. Veneers SpaDental Whitchurch Shropshire "Excellent treatment! Absolutely delighted! Dr Jindal replaced two veneers for me, providing throughout brilliant treatment. He advised me of the options for the veneers and I opted for the better quality ones. The whole process was methodical and precise, keeping me informed step by step during the whole procedure. Great attention to detail was given to myself and the implants…

More Testimonials

High praise for Lucy Smith and Maria Shrigley, Plymouth.

Dental Surgeon and her assistant are helping anxious patients to manage dental visits more easily. High praise for the team! We know that it can be hard for people to come in to see the dentist. Here's one message: "I just wanted to say a huge thank you for your care at my recent dental visit. Lucy, I know because of your care and attention to my needs I feel so much better attending an…

More Testimonials

A great dental service to Plymouth patients.

We really appreciate all the reviews we're getting from patients who visit SpaDental Plymouth. Your feedback helps us feel confident we give good advice and offer a great dental service to Plymouth patients. Thank you! Here are some recent reviews: These two reviews highlight the importance of regular examination of the soft tissues in the mouth. "I feel... grateful to [my dentist] for referring me to Derriford hospital for a lump to be removed from…

More Testimonials


We are receiving a lot of calls and messages now, and are doing our best to follow up and reply to your questions as soon as we can.

Thank you for your understanding.

During our phased return to in-person service:

Access our free remote advice and triage service:

For regular updates, please take a look at SpaDental News and follow us on Facebook too.

Patients often ask: 

If you have any questions about your oral health or our services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch using the contact button above, email, or by phone during normal working hours.