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Minerva Stomatologica 2014 May;63(5):167-78


language: English, Italian

Qualitative and quantitative assessment of plaque bacteria in pediatric patients, patients undergoing orthodontic treatment, combined orthdontic-surgical treatment and implant-prosthetic rehabilitation

Farronato G., Giannini L., Nolet F., Galbiati G., Garagiola U., Maspero C.

Orthodontic Department, University of Milan, Milano, Italy


AIM: The aim of this paper was to describe the qualitative and quantitative changes occurring within the oral bacterial flora of several groups of patients following oral prevention protocols during the stages of the dental treatment they required.
METHODS: Three hundred patients were enrolled in the study. The selected patients were categorized into different groups to receive preventive strategies according to their needs and treatment required. Plaque samples from each patient were collected at different intervals according to the treatment they were undergoing. These were then assessed under a microscope to carry out a quantitative and qualitative assessment of the plaque.
RESULTS: The Mean Plaque Index Score of most patients generally decreased during the various treatment phases and hence the overall bacterial count. However, we noticed a slight increase in the plaque index in patients undergoing orthodontic surgery after placement of the orthodontic appliance and patients undergoing combined orthodontic-surgical treatment during the intermaxillary fixation phase. We generally found that the coccoidal bacterial form was the most prevalent.
CONCLUSION: Patients who were adequately instructed and motivated through oral hygiene prevention strategies, showed a significant decrease in the plaque levels and in the overall bacterial components between the first visit and the successive sample taking. Even though we noticed a slight increase in the plaque index in patients undergoing the intermaxillary fixation phase, this decreased immediately once the phase ended and the patients managed to return to the routine oral hygiene care. This highlights the importance of constant motivation and oral hygiene instruction reinforcement.

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