Diabetes Detection in the Dental Office

Posted on May 15, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn.--()--Most people wouldn’t equate a dentist office visit with a diabetes diagnosis, but according to research presented today at the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists’ 24th Annual Scientific and Clinical Congress, that’s one of the most logical places to be screened for the chronic disease.

“Our study confirmed that engaging a dental office in the detection of diabetes is an important and proactive means of screening for undiagnosed pre-diabetes and diabetes”

Taking advantage of the fact that most Americans regularly schedule visits with their dentist, more so than with their medical doctors, dental offices emerged as an innovative and effective means for diabetes screening – particularly pre-diabetes – through a survey with questions about a patient’s body weight, family history of diabetes, ethnicity and waist circumference. Also included, are facts about diabetes.

“The main emphasis of our study is prevention,” said Saleh Aldasouqi, MD, FACE, ECNU, chief of endocrinology at Michigan State University and one of the lead investigators. “Faced with the fact that there are 29 million Americans with diabetes, of whom 8.1 million people (27.8 percent) are undiagnosed, we saw an opportunity to alleviate the health and financial burdens of undiagnosed diabetes by way of the dental office.”

"The study consisted of 500 patients who completed the 14-question survey and subsequently agreed to a finger stick for A1C measurement. The results showed that 19.2 percent were diagnosed with pre-diabetes and 1.2 percent with diabetes mellitus.”

“Our study confirmed that engaging a dental office in the detection of diabetes is an important and proactive means of screening for undiagnosed pre-diabetes and diabetes,” added Dr. Aldasouqi.

Dr. Aldasouqi reviewed his finding at a media briefing on Thursday, May 14, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at the Music City Center, Media Room.

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