May 23, 2022
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Dr. Brian Mealey is a Clinical Professor of the Specialist Division in the Department of Periodontics at UT Health San Antonio School of Dentistry. He received his D.D.S. in 1983 from UT Health San Antonio, his M.S. degree from UT Health San Antonio in 1990, and his certificate in Periodontics in 1990 from Wilford Hall Air Force Medical Center at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas.
Dr. Mealey served more than 21 years on active duty in the United States Air Force, including positions as the chairman of the Department of Periodontics at Wilford Hall Medical Center, the program director of the U.S. Air Force Periodontics Residency, and the Chief Military Consultant in Periodontics to the Air Force Surgeon General. Dr. Mealey has published extensively in the scientific literature, with an emphasis on interrelationships between oral and systemic health. He is co-editor and author of the textbooks Periodontics: Medicine, Surgery, and Implants (2004, Elsevier Publishing), and Periodontal Medicine (2000, B.C. Decker Publishing). Dr. Mealey is a Diplomat of the American Board of Periodontology and is a consultant to the American Dental Association Council on Scientific Affairs. He currently serves as a Director of the American Board of Periodontology.
More Information on Periodontitis:
The official proceedings from the 2017 Classification of Periodontal and Peri-Implant Diseases and Conditions, co-presented by the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) and the European Federation of Periodontology (EFP), are now available online as a supplement to the June 2018 issue of the Journal of Periodontology. The print version will be mailed in late July, along with the regular June issue.
The result of this landmark gathering is a redesigned disease classification framework that guides comprehensive treatment planning and allows for a personalized approach to patient care. Highlights from the updated classification include a multi-dimensional staging and grading system for periodontitis classification, a recategorization of various forms of periodontitis, and the inaugural classification for peri-implant diseases and conditions.
Untreated gingivitis can advance to periodontitis. With time, plaque can spread and grow below the gum line. Toxins produced by the bacteria in plaque irritate the gums and stimulate a chronic inflammatory response in which the body essentially turns on itself, and the tissues and bone that support the teeth are broken down and destroyed. Gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets between the teeth and gums that can become infected. As the disease progresses, the pockets deepen and more gum tissue and bone are destroyed. Eventually, teeth can become loose and may fall out or need to be removed.
Periodontitis diagnosis is typically classified by stage and grade. After your periodontist conducts a thorough assessment of your unique case, he or she may assign a stage ranging from initial to severe that describes the acuteness of disease. Additionally, your periodontist may assign a grade which communicates the rate of disease progression and anticipated response to treatment.