This Week in Perio
Feb. 22, 2012

Woman contracts deadly disease from dental water line
Bacteria in a water line at a dental office in Italy is being blamed for the death of an 82-year-old woman who contracted Legionnaires' disease just days after receiving dental treatment, according to a new case report in Lancet. In February 2011, the woman was admitted to the intensive care unit of the G.B. Morgagni-Pierantoni Hospital in Forlì, Italy, with fever and respiratory distress. She was conscious and responsive, but a chest radiograph showed several areas of lung consolidation, according to the report by lead author Maria Luisa Ricci, BD, at the Istituto Superiore di Sanità and colleagues. The patient had no underlying disease. (May require free registration to view article.)More

Periodontal disease and Down syndrome patients
Susan P. Burzynski writes, "I began my day as I have every workday, checking my schedule, only to see some of my favorite patients were coming in. Joe and Jude like to repeat the same statements: 'Suzy, are you married?' 'I love you!' 'I'm happy!' Cynthia loves to tell me jokes during her entire appointment time. Caroline hates coming to the office and refuses to talk to anyone. Mark just wants to hug me and hold my hand. What do Joe, Jude, Cynthia, Caroline, and Mark have in common? They all have various levels of Down syndrome. The other common trait for these adults is periodontal disease."More

FDA issues warning about battery-powered toothbrushes
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning to consumers that certain electric toothbrushes can break during use and cause serious injuries. The alert specifies the battery-powered Arm & Hammer Spinbrush, known as the Crest Spinbrush prior to 2009, according to a consumer update from FDA Consumer Health Information. "It's important that consumers know how to avoid the risks associated with using the Spinbrush," said Shumaya Ali, MPH, a consumer safety officer at the FDA. "We've had reports in which parts of the toothbrush broke off during use and were released into the mouth with great speed, causing broken teeth and presenting a choking hazard." (May require free registration to view article.)More

Ask the implant and restorative dentist: Make receiving dental care simple and easy
The Palm Beach Post
Dr. Mitchel Senft writes, "I was talking with a young lady in my office and I realized from the conversation that more people might start to avoid dentistry. Not from the standpoint of cost, which is a factor, but due, more so, to the increase in bad experiences and pain. Because it is harder to make ends meet and turn a profit, a dental practice is a business and will have to be more streamlined and efficient to remain viable. So where a dentist had the luxury of time, he or she may not have the availability of time to spend on more needy patients."More

Bacteria linked to obesity
Yale Daily News
Richard Flavell, Sterling professor of immunology and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, uses a technique of his own invention, known as reverse genetics, so study immunology. His current project is on nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and he published an article Feb. 1 in the journal Nature.More

CDC: Fewer smokers go to the dentist
The Associated Press via Bloomberg Businessweek
Smokers not only have more problems with their teeth than nonsmokers, they also go to the dentist less often. Those are the findings of a new government survey released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC looked at 2008 survey responses from more than 16,000 adults ages 18 through 64. More than a third of smokers reported having three or more dental problems, ranging from stained teeth to jaw pain, toothaches or infected gums. That was more than twice as much as people who never smoked.More

In the mouth, smoking zaps healthy bacteria, welcomes pathogens
Medical Xpress
Despite the daily disturbance of brushing and flossing, the mouth of a healthy person contains a stable ecosystem of healthy bacteria. New research shows that the mouth of a smoker is a much more chaotic, diverse ecosystem — and is much more susceptible to invasion by harmful bacteria. As a group, smokers suffer from higher rates of oral diseases — especially gum disease — than do nonsmokers, which is a challenge for dentists, according to PurnimaKumar, assistant professor of periodontology at Ohio State University. She and her colleagues are involved in a multi-study investigation of the role the body's microbial communities play in preventing oral disease.More

Toothbrushes: Your keys to optimal dental health
Marshall Independent
Dr. C. Paul Martin writes, "February traditionally is designated as Dental Health Month, and we in America are emphasizing the practice of preventive dental care as the subject of the current health-related publicity. Undoubtedly, dental health is one of the aspects of our healthcare directly related to our own personal habits and behavior. The preventive dental care we practice usually defines our dental health and often our entire personal well-being. The catalyst providing optimal preventive dental care is appropriate usage of the toothbrush."More

Doctors: Healthy skepticism can be good for the heart
USA Today
While consumers have access to more information about heart disease than ever before, much of it is incorrect or even dangerous, say cardiology experts Marc Gillinov and Steven Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic, authors of the new "Heart 411: The Only Guide to Heart Health You'll Ever Need." USA Today's Liz Szabo asked them how people can make smarter choices about their health.More

Dental Implant Institute of Arcadia files suit against Neoss Inc.
The Dental Implant Institute of Arcadia files a lawsuit against Neoss Inc. for product liability. Pettibone & Associates seek to hold Neoss Inc. accountable on behalf of the Dental Implant Institute of Arcadia. Dental Implant Institute of Arcadia entered into a business agreement with Neoss, a Delaware corporation, whose vision is to "advance the science of dental implant treatment." Neoss promoted their dental implant quality to be superior to that of their competitors. DII, claims in the lawsuit, the dental implants were defective.More

Reputation management for dentists
Modern Dental Practice Marketing
One of our clients, a respected dental consultant, asked how to know when testimonials are posted online about his clients. While there's no surefire way to know everything that's being posted, tweeted and whispered about you online, customized Google Alerts will give you an extra set of eyes. Google Alerts is a tool that allows you to sign up for email notifications when Google indexes information. You determine the words that will trigger notifications.More