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Our cross-sectional study of a convenience sample of older U.S. veterans identified several oral health variables�including having one to 14 teeth, low salivary levels of S. sanguis, positive plaque BANA scores, gingivitis involving bleeding and a complaint of xerostomia�as risk indicators for CHD. Whether they prove to be risk factors depends on their ability to predict episodes of CHD in a longitudinal study. Certain known risk factors, such as smoking, total cholesterol levels, BMI, diabetes and race, were not significant in this model. This probably reflects the fact that these subjects were older and many were receiving medical treatment directed toward some of these risk factors.

This study was supported by Program Project grant DE 09142 from the National Institute of Dental Research. Walter Bretz, Gary Hildebrandt, Connie Kerr, Mario DeMeirelas and Kathryn Curry assisted in the collection of the dental data. Carol Gerlach and George Taylor assisted in the preparation of the manuscript.


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