Treatment of aggressive periodontitis.

Research paper by Wim W Teughels, Rutger R Dhondt, Christel C Dekeyser, Marc M Quirynen

Indexed on: 18 Apr '14Published on: 18 Apr '14Published in: Periodontology 2000


Despite etiological differences between aggressive and chronic periodontitis, the treatment concept for aggressive periodontitis is largely similar to that for chronic periodontitis. The goal of treatment is to create a clinical condition that is conducive to retaining as many teeth as possible for as long as possible. When a diagnosis has been made and risk factors have been identified, active treatment is commenced. The initial phase of active treatment consists of mechanical debridement, either alone or supplemented with antimicrobial drugs. Scaling and root planing has been shown to be effective in improving clinical indices, but does not always guarantee long-term stability. Antimicrobials can play a significant role in controlling aggressive periodontitis. Few studies have been published on this subject for localized aggressive periodontitis, but generalized aggressive periodontitis has been subject to more scrutiny. Studies have demonstrated that systemic antibiotics as an adjuvant to scaling and root planing are more effective in controlling disease compared with scaling and root planing alone or with supplemental application of local antibiotics or antiseptics. It has also become apparent that antibiotics ought to be administered with, or just after, mechanical debridement. Several studies have shown that regimens of amoxicillin combined with metronidazole or regimens of clindamycin are the most effective and are preferable to regimens containing doxycycline. Azithromycin has been shown to be a valid alternative to the regimen of amoxicillin plus metronidazole. A limited number of studies have been published on surgical treatment in patients with aggressive periodontitis, but the studies available show that the effect can be comparable with the effect on patients with chronic periodontitis, provided that proper oral hygiene is maintained, a strict maintenance program is followed and modifiable risk factors are controlled. Both access surgery and regenerative techniques have shown good results in patients with aggressive periodontitis. Once good periodontal health has been obtained, patients must be enrolled in a strict maintenance program that is directed toward controlling risk factors for disease recurrence and tooth loss. The most significant risk factors are noncompliance with regular maintenance care, smoking, high gingival bleeding index and poor plaque control. There is no evidence to suggest that daily use of antiseptic agents should be part of the supportive periodontal therapy for aggressive periodontitis.