It is not unusual for patients to have multiple or complex oral health issues that are beyond the scope of traditional dental treatment procedures. The management of such conditions has long been a part of periodontology, but as complex disease patterns become more prevalent, it becomes necessary to ensure patient wellbeing through collaborations with oral medicine specialists. Oral medicine is the field of dentistry concerned with the oral health of medically complex patients. Essentially, oral medicine specialists are the internal medicine doctors in dentistry.
Collaboration between periodontists and oral medicine specialists has become increasingly important as recent evidence reveals relationships between many chronic diseases of aging and oral health conditions.
Cases that may require collaboration with oral medicine specialists include sensory and motor disorders of the oral tissues, facial neuralgias, pre-malignant oral lesions, benign growths of the oral cavity, as well as viral, bacterial and fungal infections. Oral medicine is also concerned with the oral care of patients undergoing cancer treatment. Specialists such as periodontists and oral medicine doctors often collaborate to manage patient care during every step of cancer treatment, including pretreatment care and the prevention and management of complications resulting from therapy. The goal is to reduce the cost of care and help cancer patients maintain a higher quality of life.
In short, oral health has significant implications for a patient’s overall health and wellbeing, which requires collaboration from periodontists and oral medicine specialists. We are particularly fortunate to have a partnership with Dr. Joel B. Esptein of IL Masonic Hospital (Chicago) and City of Hope National Medical Center (Duarte, CA). We use a team effort that goes beyond traditional assessment and treatment options to combat complex health issues. With our years of combined experience, patients can rest assured that we will provide the best care possible. We’ll be there every step of the way to help guide you through treatment planning and execution.