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Prevalence and characterization of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection and colonization in dentists.

Loster, B W; Czesnikiewicz-Guzik, M; Bielanski, W; Karczewska, E; Loster, J E; Kalukin, J; Guzik, T J; Majewski, S; Konturek, S J.
J Physiol Pharmacol; 60 Suppl 8: 13-8, 2009 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20400786
H. pylori is an important factor in the pathogenesis of numerous diseases including gastro-intestinal, metabolic and vascular disorders. Therefore, identification of individuals at risk of this infection remains of critical importance. Dentists and dental professionals may be at increased risk due to the contact with oral cavity of patients with the presence of H. pylori in the oral cavity where it may serve as reservoir for gastric infections and participate in the pathogenesis oral mucosal lesions and ulceration. However, evidence regarding the occurrence of H. pylori infections and colonization in dentists is conflicting, but has been based mainly on serological studies, which carry significant limitations. Therefore, we attempted to characterize H. pylori infection in practising dentists in relation to the duration of their work as dental professionals. Moreover, apart from seropositivity, which was used by majority of previous studies, we have performed urea-breath test (UBT), which has been shown to represent active H. pylori infection in stomach as well as the H. pylori culture from the oral cavity. We found that while the occurrence of either gastric or oral H. pylori in dentists is not greater than in general population, it seems that in male dentists there is a greater risk of gastric H. pylori infection. Moreover, we found a relationship between the length of dentist occupation with the presence of H. pylori in gingival sulcus. In conclusion, while overall occurrence of H. pylori in dentists did not differ from that reported for stomach or oral cavity in general population, there was an increased occurrence of H. pylori in male dentists and the presence of this germ in the oral cavity appears to be related to the length of professional exposure.