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People with sickle cell anemia are at a significantly higher risk of developing periodontitis, a serious gum disease, a study reported. In turn, periodontitis was associated with elevated levels of inflammation markers in patients and a three times greater chance of more than three painful vaso-occlusive crises (VOCs) each year. These findings highlight the importance of “setting of a strict periodontal screening program for this special patient population and the control/reduction of periodontal inflammation,” its researchers wrote.
The study, “Association between periodontal inflamed surface area and serum acute phase biomarkers in patients with sickle cell anemia,” was published in the journal Archives of Oral Biology. Sickle cell anemia, the most common form of sickle cell disease, and often its most severe form, has been associated with an increased release of inflammatory molecules called cytokines. This cytokine production perpetuates a chronic inflammatory state that can lead to the development of other diseases, including those affecting the gums.
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This platform is made possible through a partnership with the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc. (SCDAA) and its member organizations. SCDAA's mission is to advocate for people affected by sickle cell conditions and empower community-based organizations to maximize quality of life and raise public consciousness while advancing the search for a universal cure.