This is one of the most common surgical procedures for the treatment of periodontal disease, because it allows direct visual and physical access to the areas of bone damage. During the procedure the gum tissue is gently lifted away from the teeth. This provides access to remove all of the inflamed tissue as well as any residual plaque and calculus. In some cases, irregular surfaces of the damaged bone are smoothed to limit areas where disease-causing bacteria can hide and accumulate. The gum tissue is then placed at a new level around the teeth eliminating the pockets. A protective dressing is often placed around the necks of the teeth to cover and protect the area. You will have a follow up in 7-10 days to evaluate the site and your healing response.
Traditionally, eliminating the periodontal pockets involved the trimming away of infected and inflamed gum tissue and re-contouring the uneven bone levels. Although this is still an effective way of treating gum disease, new and more sophisticated procedures are used to rebuild and regenerate the previously lost bone support.
Guided tissue regeneration can reconstruct or redevelop the previously lost bone tissue. Most techniques utilize a graft material and a barrier membrane that are inserted over the periodontal bone loss.
Depending upon the extent of bone regeneration that is needed, we are also able to utilize specific bone growing proteins. These proteins are now commercially available, and are perfectly safe for human use. They have been shown to dramatically improve the way the body is able to rebuild bone. We have been utilizing platelet derived growth factor for several years with remarkable results. We are also currently using a new bone forming protein, bone morphogenetic protein. This was originally used in orthopedic and spine surgery, and has recently become available for intra-oral use. As leaders in bone regeneration, we are currently working with Medtronic, the corporate force behind bone morpho-genetic protein, to expand and define the most appropriate uses for this material in the oral cavity.