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Stephen Gordon Perio Protect

Jan. 12, 2011
Award is for outstanding case study on gum disease treatment.
ST. LOUIS, Missouri--Dr. Stephen Gordon of Dentistry at Millennium Park in Chicago, Ill., is the recipient of the Orkos Award. To read more about the Orkos Award, go to Orkos Award.The Orkos Award honors dental practitioners in the U.S. and Canada who have demonstrated professional excellence in treatment for gum disease (periodontitis or gingivitis) with a case study report. The award was founded by Perio Protect to recognize the contributions of individual dental professionals in the fight against gum disease. According to Dr. Tanya Dunlap, program development director of Perio Protect, “The ancient Greek word Orkos is associated with the ‘Hippocratic Oath,’ and with this award we want to honor those dentists who share our passion and our vision for the most effective, minimally invasive periodontal care.” To receive the award, doctors and hygienists submit documentation demonstrating significantly improved clinical outcomes for a patient after treatment. Dr. Gordon’s patient had had gum graft surgery in 1999 followed by regular intervals of periodontal maintenance visits with a specialist. At an August 2010 maintenance visit, a second surgery was recommended. During the visit, 96% of the sites in her mouth bled on probing and several spaces (periodontal pockets) between her teeth and gums were beyond normal depth, an indication of gum disease. The patient wanted to avoid additional surgery and sought a less invasive option. She located Dr. Gordon, who recommended that she deliver prescribed medication below the gumline with a customized prescription tray before invasive treatment began. After following this regimen for 12 days, only 4% of the sites in her mouth bled on probing and all pocket measurements decreased to the normal range (1-3 mm). Gum disease has been described by the U.S. Surgeon General as a silent epidemic. Reports indicate the disease affects approximately 85% of American adults ages 35 and older. Gum disease starts with an inflammatory response to a bacterial infection in the gum tissue.It is not only the leading cause of adult tooth loss but has also been linked to heart disease, diabetes, upper respiratory disease, and other inflammatory infections. Many people either do not know they have the disease or ignore the early symptoms of bleeding gums when it would be easiest to treat the condition.Once an individual is diagnosed with gum disease, the standard treatment available involves intensive cleaning of the teeth above and below the gum line, a repetitive practice (every 3 to 6 months) that often requires a local anesthetic. Severe cases may require surgery. Facing these options, many patients leave their disease untreated. Dr. Stephen Gordon values the minimally invasive technology offered by Perio Protect. “As a member in good standing of the Congress of Minimally Invasive Dentistry, I practice what I believe, which is to perform the least invasive dental procedure for the problem as it presents itself," he said. "The Perio Protect Method allows us to perform periodontal treatment for patients who would otherwise permit their condition to deteriorate. Many of my patients refused periodontal care due to the high cost or fear of treatment. Perio Protect is easy for patients to do and it has worked well for my patients who resist conventional invasive procedures or who do not want to repeat surgical therapy.” Dr. Gordon believes that technology can make dentistry safer, easier for the patient, less invasive, with more durable and overall better results. According to Dr. Gordon, the Perio Protect Method’s technology helps his patients deliver medication below the gumline “to promote healing, reduce bleeding points and pocket depths. I’ve seen excellent resolution in as quickly as two weeks when used as directed.” In addition to his adult restorative practice in downtown Chicago, Gordon served as an assistant professor at the University of Illinois, College of Dentistry in the Department of Restorative Dentistry for 19 years.The efforts of dentists like Dr. Gordon are helping to increase awareness of gum disease and encourage patients to fight it. Additional information about the award and current award winners can be found at For more information, visit To comment on this topic, go to