As the LANAP Clinician family continues to grow, our doctors play an important role in advancing the field of dentistry with forward thinking that puts the patient first. Periodically, we will highlight a clinician to get their perspective on the state of dentistry, LANAP cases, and more.
Dallas/Fort Worth area-based LANAP Clinician John Paul Stella, DDS weighs in on the unique proposition the PerioLase MVP-7 and LANAP and LAPIP protocols pose for oral and maxillofacial surgeons.
Is there a shift in the way oral surgeons are approaching periodontitis and peri-implantitis? Why?
I began to realize that competing in a healthy way with restorative dentists and periodontists would require oral and maxillofacial surgeons to learn more about dental hygiene, dental maintenance and implant maintenance than just simply taking the tooth out as a resolution to it. Ten percent of implants develop peri-implantitis, so being honest with ourselves as to why that happens [was important].
What was it about failing implants that made you consider the PerioLase MVP-7?
I’ve been doing dental implants now for 35 years, and a lot of my personal implants have developed peri-implantitis. That’s a really hard thing to begin to accept that somehow or another, something that I did is failing. As I began to learn the actual etiologies of peri-implantitis, and I’m discovering far more than is even discussed in the literature, I began to say, “Okay, this is a great training tool for oral and maxillofacial surgeons. They need to have a tool to address that.”
How did your results using the LANAP and LAPIP techniques reinforce your belief that the oral surgeon approach needed to evolve?
The first case I did, the patient had lost attached gingiva on about 5-6 threads and it was starting to develop peri-implantitis – inflammation, pain and bleeding when she was brushing her teeth. I used a very strict LAPIP technique, using it all over the mouth first, making sure the bacterial tidal was low, and what surprised me was just how quickly the tissue responded. When I saw her three months later, all the threads were closed.
What about the LANAP protocol has surprised you?
We’re inundated with the data that exists and the history of the machine and what it does, so I’m not surprised about [its ability to regenerate bone and tissue]. What I am surprised about is the incredible versatility. That’s what I’m really intrigued by, because I think there’s more going on than we even know. I believe we’re only touching the tip of the proverbial iceberg when it comes to the application of this technology.
What are some of the other uses of the PerioLase that you or your colleagues have found useful as oral surgeons?
[The PerioLase can be used for] TMJ surgeries, after rehabilitation, as a biostimulation for maxillofacial pain dysfunction, for neurologic regeneration and relief of various types of nerve-oriented symptoms. If you’re talking about post-trauma of muscles and soft tissues, using it as a biostim, and if you’re talking about cancer… using it for bisphosphonate and medically-related necrosis of the mandible.
Is there a reason why the PerioLase in particular seemed like the right place to start when looking for a laser option?
I think how [Millennium Dental Technologies] educates and continues to educate the end-user is best practice in the technical industry. A lot of other companies sell a product, get you there and then say “call me when you need me.” You’re calling them before they’re calling you and saying “I need you.”
Dr. John Paul Stella serves as Chairman and Program Director of the Oral and Maxillofacial Program at John Peter Smith Hospital in Dallas, TX. He is also owner of Facial & Oral Surgery Associates, with three practices in the Greater Dallas/Fort Worth area. They are proud to practice with the most advanced technologies in dentistry and medicine, including, 3D CT scans, virtual surgical planning and 3D printing, the PerioLase MVP-7, and Piezo Surgery. To learn more and set up a consultation, visit facialoralsurg.com.