Recent research has focused upon the utilization of an absorbable collagen membrane in guided tissue regeneration (GTR). Concern exists as to whether this type of membrane is beneficial in the treatment of periodontal defects. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of a type I bovine collagen membrane on treatment of Class II furcation defects. Twelve systemically healthy patients (six male and six female, ages 32 to 68) were treated. Each had bilateral mandibular furcation defects with attachment loss ≥6 mm. Prior to surgery all patients completed initial therapy including scaling and root planing. At the time of the surgery, teeth were randomly assigned to either a control (flap debridement alone) or test (flap debridement plus collagen membrane) group. Data were collected on the day of surgery, and 2, 4, and 6 months post-surgery and at the 12 month re-entry surgery. Clinical measurements included probing depth (PD), clinical attachment level (CAL), gingival recession (GR), stent to base of defect (SB), crestal bone to base of defect (CB), width of defect, and mobility. Statistical analysis was performed utilizing the paired t test. Both control and test groups demonstrated significant (P<0.05) improvement at 12 months re-entry in PD, CAL, SB, and CB when compared to the presurgery status. While there is no significant difference in PD, CAL, GR, width of defect, and mobility between control and test groups, sites treated with the collagen membrane had significantly higher bone fill (SB and CB) at re-entry. A significant improvement of furcation horizontal bone repair and defect improvement was noted in the collagen membranes-treated sites as compared to the presurgery status. No foreign body reaction was observed in either group during this study. This study suggests that the use of absorbable collagen membrane may have beneficial effects in the treatment of Class II furcal defects.
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