Prevalence of Apical Periodontitis in Patients with Autoimmune Diseases: A Case Control Study

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The purpose of this case–control study was to compare the prevalence of apical periodontitis (AP) in patients affected by autoimmune disorders (AD) (inflammatory bowel disease [IBD], rheumatoid arthritis [RA] and psoriasis [Ps]) with the prevalence of AP in subjects without AD. The prevalences of AP in patients taking biologic medications, conventional medications and no medication were also compared.

Eighty-nine patients (2145 teeth) with AD were investigated and the control group included 89 patients (2329 teeth) with no systemic diseases. Full dental panoramic tomograms were used to determine the periapical status of the teeth. Additional variables investigated included patient's socio-demographic characteristics, medications taken by AD patients, the decayed, missing and filled teeth (DMFT) index. The chi-square test and logistic regression analysis were used to evaluate the correlation between AD and AP. p-Values lower than .05 were considered to be statistically significant.

The prevalence of AP was 89.9% in AD patients and 74.2% in control subjects (odds ratio [OR] = 3.75, p = .015). The DMFT score was found to be significantly higher in the AD group (p = .004). Patients with RA had the highest risk of being affected by AP, whereas those with IBD had the lowest risk. Multiple binary logistic regression analysis indicated that the teeth of AD patients who were not taking any medication or were being treated with biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (bDMARDs) had a higher risk of being affected by AP than did the teeth of the control subjects (OR = 1.42 and OR = 2.03, respectively; p = .010). The teeth of patients taking conventional DMARDs (cDMARDs) were less affected by AP compared with those of patients taking bDMARDs.

Patients with AD, whether treated or not with biologic medications, showed a higher prevalence of AP than did those in the control group. The DMFT index score, which was higher in AD patients compared with controls was identified as a significant predictor of AP prevalence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)573-583
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Endodontic Journal
Issue number5
Early online date6 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished - May 2023


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