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Contesting conventional periodontal wisdom: implications for periodontal classifications

Authors


Rodrigo López, Department of Periodontology, School of Dentistry, Faculty of Health Sciences, Aarhus University, Vennelyst Boulevard 9, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark

Tel.: +45 8942 4141

Fax: +45 8613 6550

e-mail: rlopez@odont.au.dk

Abstract

This paper examines the common approach used to classify periodontal diseases and how this obstructs our understanding of the disease process. We address the implications of including etiological and pathogenesis-related considerations in the classifications of complex diseases like periodontitis and argue that the number of periodontal entities in a classification system ought to be determined by well-documented differences in the management of each entity. We finally discuss how an ecosocial theory of disease distribution can be helpful to understand the determinants of the distribution of disease in the population.

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