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01.12.2015 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2015 Open Access

BMC Oral Health 1/2015

A dental myth bites the dust – no observable relation between the incidence of dental abscess and the weather and lunar phase: an ecological study

BMC Oral Health > Ausgabe 1/2015
Oliver Ristow, Steffen Koerdt, Ruben Stelzner, Matthias Stelzner, Christoph Johannes, Melanie Ristow, Bettina Hohlweg-Majert, Christoph Pautke
Wichtige Hinweise

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Authors’ contributions

OR, CP, SK, and BHM designed the study. MR and CJ consulted on the statistical analysis. OR, CJ, RS, SK, and MS performed all data acquisition. OR, SK, CJ, and CP cleaned the data. MR performed the data analysis, and OR, CP, and MR interpreted the data. OR drafted the manuscript, and CP, SK, MR, RS, MS, and BHM were responsible for revision of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. All authors are responsible for the accuracy and integrity of the entire work and for ensuring that any concerns are appropriately investigated and resolved.



Anecdotal reports assert a relationship between weather and lunar activity and the odontogenic abscess (OA) incidence, but this relationship has not been validated. Therefore, the present study investigated the relationship between oral pain caused by OA and a variety of meteorological parameters and cyclic lunar activity.


The records of all dental emergency patients treated at the AllDent Zahnzentrum Emergency Unit in Munich, Germany during 2012 were retrospectively reviewed. Patients with oral pain who were diagnosed with OA and treated surgically (n = 1211) were included in the analysis. The OA incidence was correlated to daily meteorological data, biosynoptic weather analysis, and cyclic lunar activity.


There was no seasonal variation in the OA incidence. None of the meteorological parameters, lunar phase, or biosynoptic weather class were significantly correlated with the OA incidence, except the mean barometric pressure, which was weakly correlated (rho = -0.204). The OA incidence showed a decreasing trend as barometric pressure increased (p < 0.001). On multiple linear regression, the barometric pressure accounted for approximately 4% of the OA incidence.


There is no evidence supporting a correlation between the incidence of odontogenic abscess and the weather and lunar activities.
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