The association of denture wearing with reduced lung function and increased airflow limitation in 58–72 year old men

Niamh Kelly, Kyra Gormley, Dermot A. Linden, Lewis Winning, Mary McClory, Fionnuala T. Lundy, Kathy M. Cullen, Gerard J. Linden, Ikhlas A. El Karim*, Mirza Rustum Baig (Editor)

*Corresponding author for this work

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To investigate the association between denture wearing and airflow limitation in men in Northern Ireland enrolled in the Prospective Epidemiological Study of Myocardial Infarction (PRIME) study.

A case-control design was used to study partially dentate men. Cases were men aged 58–72 years who were confirmed as denture wearers. Controls were never denture wearers who were matched by age (± 1 month) and smoking habit to the cases. The men had a periodontal assessment and completed a questionnaire detailing their medical history, dental history and behaviours, social circumstances, demographic background and tobacco use. Physical examination and spirometry measurements of forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and forced vital capacity (FVC) were also undertaken. Spirometry data for edentulous men who wore complete dentures were compared with that recorded for the partially dentate men studied.

There were 353 cases who were partially dentate and were confirmed denture wearers. They were matched for age and smoking habit to never denture wearer controls. The cases had an FEV1 that was on average 140 ml lower than the controls, p = 0.0013 and a 4% reduction in percent predicted FEV1, p = 0.0022. Application of the GOLD criteria indicated that 61 (17.3%) of the cases had moderate to severe airflow limitation compared with 33 (9.3%) of controls, p = 0.0051. Fully adjusted multivariable analysis showed that partially dentate men who were denture wearers were significantly more likely (p = 0.01) to have moderate to severe airflow reduction with an adjusted odds ratio (OR) of 2.37 (95% confidence intervals 1.23–4.55). In the 153 edentulous men studied moderate to severe airflow limitation was recorded in 44 (28.4%), which was significantly higher than in the partially dentate denture wearers (p = 0.017), and the men who had never worn a denture (p<0.0001).

Denture wearing was associated with an increased risk of moderate to severe airflow limitation in the cohort of middle-aged Western European men studied.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0285117
Number of pages11
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2023


  • Aged
  • Denture, Complete - adverse effects
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Humans
  • Lung
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth, Edentulous - epidemiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Spirometry
  • Vital Capacity


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