Periodontal therapy for localized severe periodontitis in a patient receiving fixed orthodontic treatment: a case report

Satoru Morikawa, Kazuya Watanabe, Ryo Otsuka, Seiji Asoda, Taneaki Nakagawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Orthodontic treatment involves movement of teeth by compression and resorption of the alveolar bone using orthodontic forces. These movements are closely linked to the interactions between the teeth and the periodontal tissues that support them. Owing to an increase in adults seeking orthodontic treatment, orthodontists increasingly encounter patients with periodontal diseases, in whom orthodontic treatment is contraindicated. In rare cases, periodontitis may develop after treatment initiation. However, no approach for treating periodontitis after the initiation of orthodontic treatment has been established. Here, we present an approach for managing localized severe periodontitis manifesting after initiating orthodontic treatment. Case presentation: A 32-year-old Japanese woman was referred to the Department of Dentistry and Oral Surgery by an orthodontist who observed symptoms of acute periodontitis in the maxillary molars that required periodontal examination and treatment. A detailed periodontal examination, including oral bacteriological examination, revealed localized severe periodontitis (stage III, grade B) in the maxillary left first and second molars and in the mandibular right second molar. After consultation with the orthodontist, the orthodontic treatment was suspended based on the results of the bacteriological examination to allow for periodontal treatment. Full-mouth disinfection was performed with adjunctive oral sitafloxacin. Periodontal and bacteriological examinations after treatment revealed regression of the localized periodontitis with bone regeneration. Thereafter, orthodontic treatment was resumed, and good progress was achieved. Conclusions: Orthodontists should recognize the risk of acute severe periodontitis in young adults. Asymptomatic patients with localized severe periodontitis may clear a screening test before orthodontic treatment but develop acute symptoms with bone resorption during orthodontic treatment. Therefore, patients requiring orthodontic treatment should be examined by their family dentist or a periodontist to rule out periodontal issues that may impede orthodontic treatment. The patients should also be informed of age-related risks. Further, periodontists, family dentists, and orthodontists who treat adults should be informed about periodontitis and the need for interdisciplinary collaboration. In patients who develop periodontitis after orthodontic treatment initiation, temporary interruption of orthodontic treatment and aggressive periodontal intervention may facilitate recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Article number19
JournalJournal of Medical Case Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Dec


  • Case report
  • Orthodontic treatment
  • Periodontal examination
  • Severe periodontitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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