When I visited St. Paul’s recently after my grandpa had open heart surgery, I wasn’t expecting a lesson on oral hygiene and its link to heart disease. I went in expecting to hear about the evils of fatty foods and red meat which are the more commonly accepted reasons for heart attacks.
After finally locating grandpa’s room, my sister and I sat down, tied the ‘Get Well Soon’ balloon to his chair and prepared to listen. It turns out that open heart surgery is a look more intense than I ever expected. I was stunned to learn that my grandpa’s surgeons had to actually break open his rib cage to access his heart. This explained the presence of a small wrapped bag on his chest that he wasn’t allowed to take off. He said that when he coughed it felt like his chest was going to pop open. That was more than I needed to hear to know I was not interested in having open heart surgery and prevention was the way to go.
This is the case of a 72-year-old Caucasian woman who presented with a complaint of gingival pain on 11 and 21 during eating and brushing. She had no significant medical history (Figure 1.1). She described discomfort from 11, 21 for the previous six months. Incisional biopsies were performed, and immunofluorescence suggested oral lichen planus. Since there is no cure for OLP, attempts were made to treat the symptoms with Lidex® and later tacrolimus, though these measures provided no relief.
PeriowaveTM Treatment and Results
The patient underwent one treatment session with PeriowaveTM. Within one week following PeriowaveTM therapy, the gingival inflammation had resolved (Figure 1.2) and the patient experienced complete relief from the presenting complaint of pain.
Figure 1.1 – Pre-treatment gingival inflammation due to OLP Figure 1.2 – Post-treatment resolution of gingival inflammation