Pocket Elimination Versus Pocket Maintenance

Pocket elimination (depth reduction to gingival sulcus levels) has traditionally been considered one ot the main goals of periodontal therapy. It was considered vital he-cause of the need to improve accessibility to root surfaces for the therapist during treatment and lor the patient alter healing. It is now the prevalent opinion that while in general the presence of deep pockets after therapy represents a greater risk ot disease progression than shallow sites, individual probing depths per se are not good predictors of future clinical attachment l<┬╗ss.1 1 he absence of deep pockets in treated patients is. on the other hand, an excellent predictor of a stable periodontium.

Longitudinal studies ol different therapeutic modalities, carried out in the last quarter century, have given somewhat conflicting results, '" probably because of inherent problems created by the "split-mouth" design. In general, however, after surgical therapy, pockets that rebound to a shallow or moderate depth can be maintained in a healthy state and without radiographic evidence of advancing bone loss by maintenance visits consisting of scaling and root planing, with oral hygiene reinforcement performed at regular intervals ol not more than 3 months. In these cases the residual pocket can be

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Essentials of Human Physiology

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