Greetings from the Division of Periodontology!
What’s new in the Division of Periodontology
Drs. Ryan Estes and Amjad Aldallal recently completed their training in periodontology and are practicing in North Carolina and Illinois, respectively. Our new residents arrived in July and are hard at work. Drs. Jimmy Vellis and Nathan Johnson are doing a great job and we are fortunate to have them. Dr. Pinar Huja was recently awarded the Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology status. She also completed the Summer Institute in Clinical Dental Research Methods in Seattle, Washington. Dr. Dolph Dawson was recently appointed the Chair of American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Section on Periodontics. Dr. Mohanad Al-Sabbagh is currently in the 2012-2013 class fellow of American Dental Education Association Leadership Institute. We recently hired two part time faculties; Dr. Tom Rubino and Dr. Neal Shepherd. Dr Rubino obtained his dental degree from Medical College of Virginia in 1986 and Certificate in Periodontology from University of Kentucky in 1988. Dr. Shepherd obtained his D.D.S. from University of Louisville in 2005 and Certificate in Periodontology from University of Louisville in 2008. A new position for financial counselor was funded and created in the division of periodontology. Ms. Kathleen Hertz is the new hire for this position. She answers billing and insurance questions, collects payments, verifies insurance benefits and submits prior authorization requests.
We have some new devices and techniques for use in our clinic. We acquired the PerioLase Dental Laser machine launched by Millennium Dental Technology. It is a six watt, free-running nd:YAG laser. It is designed for use in the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP), which is FDA-approved alternative treatment for periodontal disease. PerioLase is also intended to be used for ablating, incising, excising, vaporization, and coagulation of soft tissue. Patient benefits from Laser-assisted periodontal therapy include much less traumatic experience, no cutting of the gingival tissue, no sutures, faster recovery, and less post-operative complications, in addition to reduced root exposure and sensitivity. We also acquired two piezosurgery units which have been very popular among the residents and faculty who have used it. It is very helpful in the extraction of teeth and in sinus augmentation surgery. We have also been excited about our use of bone morphogenetic protein (rhBMP2) in regenerative surgery. Our early results have been quite encouraging. We have also begun using the new “Roxolid” implant from Straumann AG. This implant is composed of an alloy of zirconium and titanium, which results in significant enhancement of its physical and biological properties.
The Division of Periodontology through the principal investigator Dr. Mohanad Al-Sabbagh obtained an external fund to conduct a clinical research project titled “Xenogenic Collagen Matrix to Increase the Zone of Attached Mucosa Around Implant”. The objective of this clinical prospective split-mouth study is to evaluate the efficacy of Collagen Matrix as an alternative to the Epithelialized Free Gingival Graft to increase the zone of attached mucosa around dental implants. In addition, the aesthetic outcomes and patient morbidity, and the safety of using CM will be assessed and compared to the free gingival graft (FGG).
Our clinical image library continues to grow and now contains thousands of images. These are catalogued by resident and are being organized by procedure. The library now exceeds 40 Gb is extensively used in treatment planning and surgical seminars. Eventually, the library will be made available to alumni and former faculty for use as a teaching resource. I would like to thank Dr. Jeff Dickson (Chief Resident, 2009) for his work in organizing and cataloging this material (although many have contributed to this process).
We have been using a SharePoint site for some time now to facilitate access to our instructional resources and evidence-based diagnostic and treatment protocols. This is a software application that permits cataloging articles, PowerPoint presentations, images, and other resources in one, easy-to-access place. It is possible to conduct online discussions with groups as well as permit access to forms and other resources used in our clinical practice. We plan to make this site available to all alumni in the near future and it should serve as a useful resource for board preparation and continuing education.