Case courtesy of Dr. Jan Bellows, DVM, AVDC, ABVP of All Pets Dental in Weston, FL.
Furcation defects are areas of bone loss, usually resulting from periodontal disease, in which the areas between a tooth’s roots are either exposed or inadequately protected. These defects are often treated through surgical extraction of the affected tooth. However, with the help of VTS’ graft products, surgical extractions aren’t the only option for veterinarians and pet owners.
Guided bone regeneration is a procedure that directs growth of bone to a site. In the case of a furcation defect, these procedures can help to strengthen the bone surrounding the defect. This was the case for a Golden Retriever who was referred to Dr. Jan Bellows. This pet’s owners wanted to do anything they could to save a tooth that another veterinarian wanted to extract. Dr. Bellows recommended she undergo a guided bone regeneration procedure. This patient had similar defects bilaterally. One side, unfortunately, had to be extracted. For the side pictured, Dr. Bellows used VTS’ Synergy and a cancellous mini block.
Following the surgical extraction of the other tooth, the guided tissue and bone regeneration process begins on the tooth to be saved.
VTS’ cancellous mini blocks measure approximately 0.5 cm x 0.5 cm x 0.8 cm and are ideal for use in dentistry. Cancellous blocks are made from dense cancellous bone typically found in the condyles and plateaus of femur and tibia.
Once the graft has been rehydrated, it can be cut, shaved, or burred to the size and shape the surgeon prefers or works best for the patient. For this case, Dr. Bellows cut the block into a small slice that fit directly into the defect, and then smaller pieces to be packed on top.
Dr. Bellows then packed VTS’ synthetic bone graft, Synergy, rehydrated with blood, over the defect site, and into any void left by the soft tissue flap.
Extraction isn’t always the only option for pets with furcation defects. Bone graft is the best substrate for remodeling and reformation of a patient’s lost bone stock. As advances in veterinary dentistry continue, VTS wants to help veterinarians save teeth!