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07 May 2024

King's College London study finds minimally-invasive non-surgical treatment has positive outcomes in treating intrabony defects

In a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology, the team from the Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences at King’s College London have found that a new technique can resolve some of the complications that arise as a result of intrabony defects.

Dental inspection hero

Intrabony defects are deep defects of the bone around teeth due to gum disease. Despite improvements in treatments, they often lead to tooth loss, unless they are treated with complex gum surgeries. 

The study set out to assess the potential benefits of minimally-invasive non-surgical treatment (MINST) in teeth with intrabony defects, and to explore the factors associated with the outcomes. In periodontology, minimally invasive interventions were first applied to surgical treatment, but these principles have also been applied to non-surgical periodontal therapy with the emergence of minimally invasive non-surgical therapy. MINST has been proposed as an alternative treatment approach for intrabony defects, aimed at reducing tissue trauma and optimising wound healing, whilst avoiding surgical incisions and suturing.

A multicentre trial was conducted in 100 intrabony defects in periodontitis patients in private practice in the UK, Italy and Spain. Steps 1 and 2 periodontal therapy including MINST were provided. Clinical and radiographic data were analysed at baseline and 12 months after treatment, with the primary aim being change in radiographic defect depth at 12 months.

The results showed that MINST can resolve at least half of the intrabony defects, with no extractions or surgeries required. This suggests the validity of this method as a potential technique to save many teeth with advanced gum problems without the need for surgery.

Said Luigi Nibali, Professor of Periodontology at King’s College London: “The outcome of the study suggests the validity of this method as a potential technique to save many teeth with advanced gum problems, without the need for surgery.”

“This has the potential to save costs for the NHS and the patient, and the treatment is of course a lot more patient friendly.”



Minimally-invasive non-surgical periodontal therapy of intrabony defects: a prospective multicentre cohort study was published in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology on Tuesday 7 May, 2024 and can be found here:

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Luigi Nibali

Head of the Centre for Host-Microbiome Interactions