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First-of-its-kind track at ADA 2018 to examine oral-systemic health connection

May 01, 2018

By Michelle Manchir

Dr. Bud Evans
Dr. Evans
When Dr. Bud Evans visited Amy Lynn Doneen, DNP, at The Heart Attack & Stroke Prevention Center about a year ago near his home in Washington state, a blood test revealed that his inflammatory markers were up.

Dr. Doneen suggested he see an endodontist for a root canal examination.

He made an appointment and, days later, discovered he had a cracked root. The tooth was pulled and an implant placed.
“She knew something was up,” said Dr. Evans, whose concern for his cardiovascular health stems in part from his genes — his late father’s first heart attack came at age 50.

The experience highlighted for Dr. Evans, continuing education chair of the ADA Advisory Committee on Annual Meetings, the important connection between oral and systemic health.

ADA 2018 – America’s Dental Meeting in Honolulu will feature a track of courses on this topic, including two with Dr. Doneen.

With Bradley Bale, M.D., a clinical associate professor at Washington State University College of Medicine, Dr. Doneen will lead the course Inflammation: The Oral-Systemic Connection. Participants will learn to recognize what causes a heart attack and ischemic stroke, discuss the importance of understanding inflammation and artery wall health and describe the vascular link between periodontal disease and heart attack and stroke. The course is scheduled Oct. 18 (5107) 7-10 a.m. and again the same day from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (5114).
Drs. Bale and Doneen developed the Bale/Doneen method, a protocol for detecting patients at risk for heart attacks, ischemic strokes or diabetes through techniques such as heart scans, inflammation tests, ultrasound measurement of major arteries and personalized treatment strategies.

Drs. Doneen and Bale will lead a second course, Periodontal Pathogens and Inflammation: Clinical Application, in which the pair will discuss the Bale/Doneen method and help participants learn to discern the relationship between periodontal pathogens and vascular disease, recognize the importance of medicine and dentistry working together and develop a plan to be a cardiovascular disease prevention specialist. The course is twice offered Oct. 19: 7-10 a.m. (6109) and 11 a.m.-to 2 p.m. (6117.)

Dr. Evans suggests reading a scientific article authored in part by Drs. Doneen and Bale, High-Risk Periodontal Pathogens Contribute to the Pathogenesis of Atherosclerosis, before attending their courses. It is available online for ADA members.

While some of the other courses in the oral-systemic track are sold out, seats remain in others. Register for the ADA meeting and courses online at

Below are summaries of the other courses available in the oral-systemic track.

In Targeting Biofilm: The Secret to Hygiene Success participants will learn to understand the physical nature of biofilm and the need for mechanical removal; describe a protocol for biofilm elimination by evaluating, educating and engaging patients; and recognize the connection between biofilm and the host-mediated response. This course is designed for dentists, hygienists and hygiene assistants who will learn ultrasonic techniques for various tips as well as hands-on implementation for all tooth surfaces. Diane Bosgieter, RDH, and Dr. Rand Mattson will lead the course, which is scheduled Oct. 19, 7-9:30 a.m. (6209), 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (6215) and 2-4:30 p.m. (6216).

In the course Potpourri of Pearls on Women’s Health, participants will learn about women’s health issues, gain information to achieve optimal state of health for women and provide care to females with greater understanding of medical issues. Dr. Barbara Steinberg, clinical professor of surgery at Drexel University College of Medicine and adjunct associate professor of oral medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, will lead the course, which is scheduled Oct. 20 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (7113).

In A Lifetime of Health and Wellness for Women participants will discuss stress and depression, perimenopause, menopause and menopausal hormone therapy, heart disease and common cancers. Participants will learn to provide care to women with greater understanding of medical issues. Dr. Steinberg will lead the Oct. 21 course 7:30-10 a.m. (8106).

At Great Guts: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, participants will gain insight into patients’ microbiome and learn ways to support making a body where good bacteria can thrive. Attendees will learn to identify the disruption that junk food, stress, sedentary living and antibiotics can cause and some habits to enjoy better digestion and nutrient absorption. Dr. Uche Odiatu will present the course Oct. 20, 7-9 a.m. (7103).

In Body on Fire: Inflammation’s Role in Oral-Systemic Links, participants will be able to recognize periodontal disease as a chronic inflammatory disease, affecting multiple conditions; discover new connections between periodontitis, the prostate and colon cancer; and address clinical and nutritional prevention strategies regarding inflammation. Speaker Kelli Jaecks, RDH, will lead the course Oct. 21, 7:30-10 a.m. (8301).

To register for these and other courses at ADA 2018, visit