In the study, 15,724 patients (3.09%) developed postoperative pneumonia and 1734 (0.34%) died within 30 days of surgery. After adjustments, preoperative oral care by a dentist was linked with a decrease in postoperative pneumonia (3.28% versus 3.76%) and death within 30 days (0.30% versus 0.42%).
"The findings could help improve strategies for the prevention of postoperative complications," the authors wrote.
Ishimaru et al. Preoperative oral care and effect on postoperative complications after major cancer surgery. Br J Surg. 2018; doi:10.1002/bjs.10915 [Article]