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A pilot study of the gingival response when smokers switch from smoking to vaping

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

R. Wadia, V. Booth, H. F. Yap, D. L. Moyes

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)722-726
Number of pages5
JournalBritish Dental Journal
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 9 Dec 2016

King's Authors


Introduction: Tobacco smoking is one of the most important risk factors for periodontitis as it alters the host response to plaque. Although the prevalence of tobacco smoking has declined in recent years, the use of electronic-cigarettes (vaping) has increased. The effect of vaping on the gingiva is unknown and an evidence-base needs to be established before providing dental advice about the use of these products.

Objective: To compare the gingival health of a group of established smokers before and after substituting vaping for smoking tobacco.Design Pilot.Setting Guy's Dental Hospital (England) from April-December 2015.Materials and methods Twenty established smokers (all staff members at Guy's Hospital) with mild periodontal disease replaced their regular smoking habits with the use of e-cigarettes for two weeks.Main outcome measure The primary outcome measure of gingival inflammation was bleeding on probing. Levels of selected pro-inflammatory cytokines in GCF, saliva and serum samples were also determined.

Results and conclusions: There was a statistically significant increase in gingival inflammation when tobacco smokers switched from smoking to vaping for two weeks. However, this result must be interpreted with extreme caution since this is only a pilot study. Nonetheless, this study should provide a stepping stone to encourage further investigation of the effects of vaping on periodontal health.

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