Research Article| Volume 17, ISSUE 1, P48-54, February 2023

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Can hyperglycemia be associated with caries activity and root caries in adults?

Published:November 24, 2022DOI:


      • Glucose levels per se are involved in the high caries experience in diabetics, not just hyposalivation.
      • Increases in A1c and fasting blood glucose impact the number of root caries lesions.
      • Salivary glucose levels are correlated with a higher number of active coronal caries in diabetics.



      A previous meta-analysis showed that individuals with Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) have a greater chance of developing both coronal caries and root caries than systemically healthy ones, which can be influenced by hyperglycemia per se. This study aimed to associate blood and salivary glucose levels with caries.


      This research is a subset of a cross-sectional study. N = 39 individuals underwent a dental examination and salivary glucose, fasting blood glucose (FBG) and glycated hemoglobin (A1c) measurements.


      The prevalence of active coronal caries was 10.2%, and that of root caries was 20.5%. A1c and FBG averages were higher in individuals with root caries (9.75 ± 1.71 and 186.3 ± 62.5) than without (7.01 ± 2.23 and 115.1 ± 48.6; p < 0.05). Individuals with T2D showed weak correlation of salivary glucose and number of active coronal caries. Significant correlations were observed between salivary and blood glucose. There was relevance of A1c (0.53; CI=0.124–0.941; p = 0.01) and FBG (0.019; CI=0.006–0.033; p = 0.006) toward the increased number of root caries lesions, even after adjustment for salivary flow and age.


      Blood glucose levels are associated with an increased number of root caries in adults with or without T2D. In individuals with T2D, salivary glucose was correlated with active coronal caries. Additional studies are needed to support this association.


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