Reports & Studies

Covid-19 & periodontitis

PD Dr. Kristina Bertl, PhD MSc MBA

In the previous article we summarized the results of a systematic review about manifestations of oral symptoms in patients with a Covid-19 infection (see: Covid-19 & oral symptoms). Another fascinating study was recently published in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology. In this study, Marouf et al. (2021) investigated the possible influence of periodontitis on the progression of Covid-19 infections.

Covid-19 & periodontitis

Based on data from 568 people infected with Covid-19, the authors calculated the association between periodontitis and the occurrence of any type of Covid-19 complication, and on the risk of being admitted to intensive care, requiring artificial ventilation, or dying.

Of the 568 patients with Covid-19, forty experienced complications and 33–i.e. 82.5% (!!) – of these 40 patients also had periodontitis. As part of a detailed statistical analysis, possible influencing factors such as age, sex, smoking status and other comorbidities were taken into account, in order to best identify the true influence of periodontitis.

The calculations ultimately showed that among patients with periodontitis ...

  • ...the incidence of complications in general during illness was almost four times higher.
  • ...the risk of being admitted to intensive care was approximately three-and-a-half times higher.
  • ...the risk of needing artificial ventilation was approximately four-and-a-half times higher.
  • ...the risk of death was almost nine times higher.

These data once again show that periodontitis is often closely linked to systemic diseases and that it can have a negative influence of the progression of these diseases.


  1. Marouf N, Cai W, Said KN, et al. Association between periodontitis and severity of COVID-19 infection: A case-control study. J Clin Periodontol. 2021;00: 1–9.