Chronic periodontitis is a prevalent condition, affecting nearly half of the adult US population aged 30 years or older. When left untreated, the condition can lead to debilitating tooth loss. While there are well established therapies for all degrees of disease, many are expensive and out of reach to those who lack access to care for medical, socio-economic, or geographic reasons. Scaling and root planing (SC/RP) is the recognized first level of care for periodontally affected teeth, but its overall efficacy is limited to about 1 mm of pocket depth reduction even with the introduction of antibiotic co-therapy. The next level of care requires more invasive surgical approaches and requires practitioners with surgical skills, thus added expense for the patient. The typical open surgical flap approaches will also expose the patient to associated risks and morbidities. To address the need for a minimally invasive approach to periodontal defect treatment with greater potential to reduce pocket depth than SC/RP, a novel nonsurgical approach was developed in a private practice setting. The approach avoids the formation of traditional flaps for access and instead uses adaptations of standard instrumentation for non-incisional debridement of the periodontal pocket lining and preparation of the root surface. This report is a dental chart review, a retrospective analysis of the 3 to 6-month post-treatment outcomes for 221 patients treated by the procedure in this private practice. While the data available was limited to “real world” clinical information available in the patient records, they do provide evidence that this procedure has the potential to address periodontal defects in a meaningful way with a mean pocket depth (PD) reduction of 3.44 ± 1.09 mm and with 75% of the treated sites having a final PD of 4 mm or less.
Key words: Periodontology, therapy, nonsurgical.
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