dvm - January 2013 - (Page B1)
An embedded predicament
Hair in the oral cavity? How did it get there? Did it grow from hair follicles in the gingival sulcus? Is it a problem? If so, what can you do about it? By Jan Bellows, DVM, DAVDC, DABVP
ften during an oral examination in dogs with short, coarse coats (e.g., bulldogs, Labrador retrievers and beagles), we notice coarse hairs extending from the canine, incisor or hard palate gingiva (Photos 1-3, p 2). Although it may appear as if the hair is growing ectopically, these dogs are usually afected by infammatory skin disease such as atopy, demodicosis or fea bite allergy, resulting in excessive self-grooming and guard hairs from the hair coat becoming embedded in the mouth. Gingival disease may occur second-
ary to a foreign body reaction to the trapped hair in the gingival sulci. Even though hair composed of the dog’s own cells may appear to be innocently lying below the gingiva, it acts as an irritant in the gingival sulcus. Hair traps bacteria, provoking periodontal infammation, infection, support loss and pain. Te severity of periodontal disease secondary to hair lodged subgingivally varies from dog to dog. Some will have little to no response, while others will have destructive periodontal infection, gingival recession, clefts and alveolar dehiscence. Te periodontium can change from
normal to advanced disease in just a matter of weeks. Unfortunately, there’s no way to predetermine which dogs will react and which won’t. And hair located anywhere other than on the skin can cause infammation and infection. So once hair is noted subgingivally, it needs to be removed and the damage assessed (Photos 4, 5A and 5B, p 2).
The pathophysiology of gingival recession
Normally, the dental alveolus completely surrounds the roots. Te position of the gingival margin is de-
SURGERY STAT 6 Try a method of placing chest tubes that reduces the chance of iatrogenic damage during placement. dvm360.com/medicine Find interactive cases, expert answers to yoru clinical questions and more.
medicine360 | January 2013 |
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of dvm - January 2013
dvm - January 2013
Where did I go wrong?
Pets and Vets
CATalyst survey examines how veterinarians really feel about animal shelters and pet rescue organizations.
What’s new? What’s now?
Employee steals more than $400,000 from clinic
Longtime veterinarian killed in plane crash in California
Canadian SPCA concerned by number of “home neutering” reports
Arrest made in Minnesota veterinary hospital arson
Washington DVM accused of abusing patients, medications
When faced with disaster, practices need a plan
University of Minnesota celebrates 750,000th urolith
Death to debt
Letter of the law
dvm - January 2013