More Insights Provided by Salivary Testing

One of the insights gained when using salivary testing is finding that good point to stop treatment. This therapeutic endpoint may be defined by the return to gingival health, reduction of pocket depth, and a stable clinical attachment level. In other words, the therapeutic endpoint tells us when we have done all we can do for the time, and let the remaining healing occur unassisted. With the easy availability of post-op bacterial testing, the therapeutic endpoint can now be expanded to include the post-treatment bacterial levels.

There will be cases in which favorable clinical treatment outcomes are achieved and post-op bacterial levels are considerably reduced; thus the therapeutic endpoint has been reached. If the clinical outcome is favorable and the bacterial levels do not reduce significantly, or the bacterial species revealed in the report have shifted, this also provides clinically impactful information. Shifts and unexpected responses to the bacterial load are indicators of potentially refractory disease, which will influence needed monitoring and maintenance intervals.

We are not treating bar graphs as noted on the test report, but using the information to make better clinical decisions for our patients.

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The Insights Provided by Salivary Testing

Richard H. Nagelberg, DDS

Richard H. Nagelberg, DDS

Dr. Richard Nagelberg has been practicing general dentistry in suburban Philadelphia for 34 years. He has international practice experience, having provided dental services in Thailand, Cambodia, and Canada. He is an advisory board member, speaker, key opinion leader and clinical consultant for several dental companies and organizations. Richard has a monthly column in Dental Economics magazine, “GP Perio-The Oral-Systemic Connection”. He is a recipient of Dentistry Today’s Top Clinicians in CE, 2009-2016. A respected member of the dental community, Richard lectures internationally on a variety of topics centered on understanding the impact dental professionals have beyond the oral cavity.
Richard H. Nagelberg, DDS

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One thought on “More Insights Provided by Salivary Testing

  1. Bacterial testing is a critical component of periodontal diagnosis and treatment. It is not, however, the end all. PD occurs because of the interaction of pathogens with the host, meaning the host condition is also of utmost importance. Factors like systemic oxidative burden, immune health, nutritional status need to be included in the diagnosis stage to optimize outcomes and prevent relapse.

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