Dental care for patients with heart failure: An update

Wayne W. Herman, Henry W. Ferguson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Background. Heart failure (HF) is a common clinical syndrome that affects an estimated 5.7 million Americans. It is a growing health problem, particularly in people 65 years or older. Therefore, the probability that dental practitioners will have patients who have HF is increasing. Methods. The authors reviewed medical literature from 2000 through 2009 to determine the incidence, classifications, pathophysiology and advances in the medical diagnosis and treatment of HF. They also reviewed available dental literature during the same period to formulate treatment recommendations for dental care of people who have HF. Results. Medicine has made advances in understanding and treating HF. These advances have resulted in the development of revised classification systems, a more structured approach to patient assessment and improved therapeutic options. Conclusions. Dentists need to be aware of advances in the diagnosis and treatment of HF. Keeping in mind the potential for morbidity in patients who have HF, identifying and accurately assessing these patients is imperative for clinical management. Clinical Implications. Often it is necessary for dentists to consult with patients' physicians to coordinate care and determine whether treatment can be rendered appropriately in a routine dental setting or whether advanced support, monitoring or both are necessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)845-853
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Dental Association
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Dental care for chronically ill
  • Heart failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)


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