Objectives: Report results of a randomized-clinical trial of the efficacy of periodontal care in the improvement of glycemic control in 165 veterans with poorly controlled diabetes over 4 months.
Methods: Outcomes were change in Haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) in the Early Treatment versus untreated (Usual Care) groups and percent of participants with decreases in HbA1c. Analyses included simple/multiple variable linear/logistic regressions, adjusted for baseline HbA1c, age, and duration of diabetes.
Results: Unadjusted analyses showed no differences between groups. After adjustment for baseline HbA1c, age, and diabetes duration, the mean absolute HbA1c change in the Early Treatment group was −0.65%versus−0.51% in the Usual Care group (p=0.47). Adjusted odds for improvement by 0.5% in the Early Treatment group was 1.67 (95% confidence interval: 0.84, 3.34, p=0.14). Usual Care subjects were twice as likely to increase insulin from baseline to 4 months (20%versus 11%, p=0.12) and less likely to decrease insulin (1%versus 6%, p=0.21) than Early Treatment subjects. Among insulin users at baseline, more increased insulin in the Usual Care group (40%versus 21%, p=0.06).
Conclusions: No significant benefit was found for periodontal therapy after 4 months in this study; trends in some results were in favour of periodontal treatment.