Take Gum Disease Seriously During Pregnancy

December 31, 2006

I read with interest Dr Robert Blereau’s “Photoclinic” caseof a young woman with epulis of pregnancy (CONSULTANT,May 2002, page 784) (Figure), in which the author notesthat the condition usually regresses spontaneously after delivery.

I read with interest Dr Robert Blereau's "Photoclinic" caseof a young woman with epulis of pregnancy (CONSULTANT,May 2002, page 784) (Figure), in which the author notesthat the condition usually regresses spontaneously after delivery.However, a recent study suggests that maternal periodontaldisease may be a risk factor for delivery of a preterm,low-birth-weight infant.1 Thus, instead of waitinguntil after delivery for the condition to resolve, it would bewise to promptly refer an affected patient to her dentist or hygienistfor a professional prophylaxis, oral health instruction,and possibly a prescription for antimicrobial rinse therapy.
-- Debbie L. Sangiuliano, RDH
   New Brunswick, NJ

I agree with your recommendationof prompt dental referral for patientswith epulis of pregnancy.
-- Robert Blereau, MD
   Morgantown, La

References:

REFERENCE:
1.

Offenbacher S, Katz V, Fertik G, et al. Periodontal infection as a possible riskfactor for preterm low birth weight.

J Periodontol. 1996;67:1103-1113.