Dental Corner: A Boxer with Gingival Hyperplasia
A veterinary team tames excessive gingival tissue in a boxer.
Apr 01, 2013
Complete blood count and serum chemistry profile results were normal as were preoperative chest radiographs. Rocky was anesthetized, and intraoral radiographs were taken to evaluate the teeth and jawbones.
The veterinarian noted class 3 malocclusion, or mandibular distoclusion, in which the mandible is longer and wider than the maxilla. Rocky was missing several teeth, and a few teeth were affected by periodontal disease.Treatment
Diagnostic testing and follow-up care
Gingival hyperplasia is a common, benign condition in which the gingiva grows at an abnormal rate and can cover the crowns of the teeth, creating pseudopockets that trap debris and bacteria and affect periodontal health. The affected gingiva must be surgically removed, and the overgrowth will likely recur. Certain medications, such as cyclosporine,1 have been linked to increased formation of excessive gingival tissue. However, the recommended treatment is the same.
Rocky was sent home with antibiotics, analgesics, and instructions to feed soft food only for two weeks. At his recheck appointment, his gingiva was healing well, and Rocky seemed comfortable.
Patricia March, CVT, VTS (Dentistry), is a dental technician at Animal Dental Center in Baltimore, Md., and the past president of the Academy of Veterinary Dental Technicians.
1. Beckman B. Gingival hyperplasia. NAVC Clin Brief 2010:11-14.