Aim: To review the literature on the effects of stannous fluoride on gingivitis.
Material and Methods: The Medline and cochrane central register of controlled trials were searched up to August 2005 to identify appropriate studies. The primary outcome measure was gingivitis.
Results: Independent screening of titles and abstracts of 542 papers resulted in 36 publications (inter-reviewer ê score of 0.76), out of which 15 papers finally fulfilled the criteria of eligibility. For SnF2dentifrices, a statistically significant reduction in gingivitis was noted in comparison with control (weighted mean difference (WMD) of 0.15 (gingival index) and 0.21 (gingivitis severity index) (test for heterogeneity p<0.00001, I2=91.1% and p=0.03, I2=80.1%, respectively)). With regard to plaque reduction inconsistent results existed. On using the plaque index no differences were found, whereas meta-analysis of the Turesky index provided a WMD of 0.31 (p=0.01, test for heterogeneity p<0.0001, I2=91.7%). Because of insufficient data, a meta-analysis for SnF2mouth rinse and dentifrice/mouthrinse formulations was not performed.
Conclusions: The use of SnF2 dentifrices results in gingivitis and plaque reduction when compared with a conventional dentifrice. The precise magnitude of this effect was difficult to assess because of a high level of heterogeneity in study outcomes.