Healthy Heart Reports
Bleeding Gums And Heart Attacks
Six large studies show that people with bleeding gums are at increased risk for heart attacks. The association holds for Harvard doctors, army veterans and Pima Indians. Antibiotics cured the Pima Indians' gum disease and protected them from heart attacks. People with gum disease have high blood levels of C-reactive protein, a chemical that is elevated when a person has an infection and are at high risk for heart attacks (1).
Two specific bacteria found regularly in the intestines, Campylobacter rectus and campylobacter showae, have been shown to cause gum disease (2). These bacteria can usually be cured with quinolone antibiotics (ofloxacin) or erythromycin (Zithromax, Biaxin).
Another group of bacteria called chlamydia have been shown in more than 500 studies to cause heart attacks, and several studies show that taking the antibiotics Zithromax or Biaxin helped to prevent second heart attacks. Other studies show that people who have been given erythromycin or quinolone antibiotics within a year were far less likely to suffer heart attacks. Chlamydia is killed by antibiotics such a Zithromax, Biaxin, Dirithromycin, doxycycline, minocycline, and the quinolone class.
If you have gum disease or are at high risk for a heart attack because of high cholesterol or diabetes, ask your doctor to let you take erythromycin antibiotics for several weeks.
1) TJ Wu, , Trevisan, RJ Genco, KL Falkner, JP Dorn, CT Sempos. Examination of the relation between periodontal health status and cardiovascular risk factors: Serum total and high density lipoprotein cholesterol, C-reactive protein, and plasma fibrinogen. American Journal of Epidemiology, 2000, Vol 151, Iss 3, pp 273-282
Address Wu TJ, SUNY Buffalo, Dept Social & Prevent Med, Buffalo,NY 14260 USA.
2) PJ Macuch, ACR Tanner. Campylobacter species in health, gingivitis, and periodontitis. Journal of Dental Research, 2000, Vol 79, Iss 2, pp 785-792Address:Tanner ACR, Altran Corp, Boston,MA USA
Copyright 2000 www.DrMirkin.com
Dr. Mirkin's opinions and the references cited are for information only, and are not intended to diagnose or prescribe. For your specific diagnosis and treatment, consult your doctor or health care provider.
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