[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
August 1969

Reduction of Bacteremia After Oral Manipulations

Author Affiliations

From the University of Tennessee, Memphis.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1969;90(2):198-201. doi:10.1001/archotol.1969.00770030200022

POSTOPERATIVE bacteremias have been an established clinical finding for many years. The percentage of positive bacteremias produced have varied as much as the procedures that were used to produce the bacteremias and the methods used to record the presence of microorganisms following the procedures. We found in 1960 that a bacteremia could be produced by simply brushing the teeth (Table 1). A group of 50 dental students were used in the experiment and 26% showed a positive bacteremia in what were considered "clean mouths" (C. L. Flanigan and J. F. Smith, unpublished data). O'Kell and Elliot1 showed in 1935 that bacteremia followed dental surgery. In 1949 Lazansky et al2 produced a detectable bacteremia by scaling the lower mandibular incisors for ten minutes. Peterson3 in 1951 recovered bacteria in patients treated routinely with scaling and root planing. Richards4 recovered Streptococcus viridans from the blood stream of patients