Evidence is building that dental plaque and inflammatory periodontal disease may contribute to the initiation and/or progression of certain lung diseases. Pneumonia is an acute infection of the lung, demonstrating the following respiratory signs and symptoms: cough; shortness of breath; increased respiratory rate; sputum production; and chest pain. Pneumonia may also induce nonspecific systemic symptoms, including fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and lack of appetite. Although pneumonia can be caused by viruses or fungi, bacteria are the most frequent cause of this infection and are the most easily treatable. Pneumonia often affects individuals with impaired host defense systems, for example, conditions with defects in antibody production, phagocytosis, ciliary function, or reduced CD4 + T‐lymphocyte counts, as seen in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) ( 7 ). Other underlying respiratory diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, can also lead to pneumonia. Community‐acquired pneumonia is defined as infection occurring in any individual living in the community ( 7 ). The annual cost for the treatment of community‐acquired pneumonia exceeds $9 billion and affects 4 million adults per year in the USA, c. 20% of whom are admitted to a hospital for treatment. The rate of pneumonia ranges from 8 to 15
Periodontology 2000 – Wiley
Published: Jun 1, 2007
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