Author(s): Mombelli A, Schmid B, Rutar A, Lang NP
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Abstract BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to determine the distribution patterns of Porphyromonas gingivalis, Prevotella intermedia/nigrescens, and Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans in periodontitis patients after standard mechanical periodontal therapy, and to determine factors increasing the odds to detect these target organisms in treated sites. METHODS: Eight hundred fifty-two (852) separate subgingival microbial samples were taken from the mesial and distal aspects of every tooth in 17 patients. Target organisms were identified culturally. RESULTS: The 3 microorganisms showed different persistence patterns: P. gingivalis was detected in a high percentage of subjects (59\%), but in a low proportion of sites (5.4\%). P. intermedia/nigrescens was detected in all subjects except one, and in 40.6\% of the tested sites. Only 5 subjects were A. actinomycetemcomitans positive, but 2 of them showed a very high number of positive sites (44\% and 75\%, respectively). A highly significant relationship was found between a subject's tendency to bleed upon sampling and the number of P. intermedia/nigrescens-positive sites. A significant portion of the variation in frequency of persisting P. gingivalis could be explained by the frequency of persisting pockets deeper than 4 mm. No similar relationship could be established between clinical parameters and A. actinomycetemcomitans. On a site level, the odds of detecting P. gingivalis increased by a factor of 2.47 (P= 0.0001) for every millimeter of residual probing depth; the odds of detecting P. intermedia/nigrescens increased by a factor of 1.84 (P= 0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: If, after standard mechanical periodontal therapy, a large number of sites continue to bleed, one may expect an increased number of sites positive for P. intermedia/ nigrescens. If many deep pockets persist, a greater number of P. gingivalis-positive sites can be expected.
This article was published in J Periodontol
and referenced in JBR Journal of Interdisciplinary Medicine and Dental Science