A Patient Safety and Risk Management Newsletter from Fortress Insurance Company
"Page 2 Featured Article: Periodontal Disease Treatment: Best Practices to Improve Patient Outcomes and Mitigate Risk - This article shares best practices to help improve patient outcomes related to periodontal treatment. By: Julie Goldberg, DDS Practice Management
Periodontal disease is the most common cause of tooth loss among adults.1 Mismanagement of this disease can lead to patient dissatisfaction, allegations of supervised neglect, and failed implants. This article will cover best practices to improve patient outcomes and mitigate risk related to the assessment and treatment of periodontal disease. Identify risk factors and indicators Review existing office health history forms The health history form may provide the first opportunity to identify patients who are at risk for periodontal disease. Pre-existing health issues and behaviors that may indicate an increased risk of periodontal disease includes: diabetes, xerostomia, smoking, electronic cigarette and smokeless tobacco use, and any barriers to maintaining oral hygiene. Including these conditions and habits on your health history form provides an opportunity to discuss treatment of the condition or cessation of the habit. Evaluate a patient’s health history responses and document any clarifying conversations Reviewing your patient’s health history forms for accuracy, can help provide a thorough understanding of the patient’s condition and dental habits. For example, many patients are unaware that they may be prone to xerostomia with certain medications. A discussion with the patient to confirm their self-reported history also allows you an opportunity to educate the patient on their identified periodontal disease risks. Subsequent documentation of these discussions in the patient’s chart further supports your efforts."