November 2011
American Dental Association Science&Technology
Essential Updates for Your Practice
In This Issue

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Managing care of patients on antiresorptive therapies for osteoporosis

Managing care of patients on antiresorptive therapies for osteoporosis

The November issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) features a narrative review on osteonecrosis of the jaw in patients with low bone mass receiving treatment with antiresorptive agents like bisphosphonates.

The authors conclude that the risk of developing antiresorptive agent-induced osteonecrosis of the jaw (ARONJ) in a patient taking these drugs for osteoporosis appears to be low. The significant therapeutic benefit of antiresorptive agents in these patients far outweighs the small risk of developing ARONJ. However, general treatment recommendations include a discussion with patients of the risks and benefits of dental care when receiving antiresorptive therapy.

The report contains recommendations related to general dentistry; periodontal disease management; implant placement and maintenance; oral and maxillofacial surgery; endodontics; restorative dentistry and prosthodontics; orthodontics; and C-terminal telopeptide testing and drug holidays.

The narrative review is based on an appraisal of the literature by an advisory committee of the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs and updates the committee’s 2008 advisory statement.

Click here to review the executive summary in the November issue of JADA.

Additional information to share with your patients is available from JADA and in Oral Health Topics on

Patient Education: Osteoporosis Medications and Your Dental HealthPatient Education: Osteoporosis Medications and Your Dental Health

This useful patient education brochure provides the basic facts about osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) and emphasizes that regular dental visits and care of the teeth and gums are the best way to prevent ONJ.

To order, visit and search for product item W418 or call 1-800-947-4746. ADA members get a 33% discount and pay only $26 for a package of 50 brochures.

Online video tutorials explain statistics used in systematic reviews

A new series of online video tutorials helps dental professionals and students become more discriminating readers of research articles and how they can be applied in the dental practice. The videos on were developed by the ADA Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry (EBD).

Online video tutorials explain statistics used in systematic reviewsThe first three tutorials focus on statistics and provide an understanding of the statistics-related concepts clinicians will encounter in evidence-based research and systematic reviews.

  • “Why Do We Need Statistics?” describes three situations that can be quantified using statistics and identifies what the authors of a systematic review are trying to quantify.
  • “What are the Different Types of Data?” explains the differences between nominal, ordinal and quantitative data and identifies the type of data being presented in a systematic review.
  • In “What is a Null Hypothesis?” viewers develop a null hypothesis and identify the null hypotheses in systematic reviews.

For more advanced training in EBD principles, attend the next ADA EBD Champions Conference in Chicago on March 8-10, 2012.

The EBD Champions Conference recruits and trains selected dentists throughout the United States to learn about evidence-based dentistry and how to apply EBD principles and tools in clinical decision-making. EBD Champions then disseminate information about EBD to their colleagues.

Only 100 applicants are selected to participate in this unique educational opportunity, which is the first of its kind in dentistry. The conference tuition is free to attendees who earn 11 to 14 hours of CE credit. More information and the online application will be coming soon to

HHS names oral health a 'Leading Health Indicator'HHS names oral health a 'Leading Health Indicator'

For the first time, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has included oral health among the "leading health indicators" (LHIs) used to evaluate the nation's progress in promoting health care objectives.

A broad-based coalition of dental and other health care advocates, including the ADA, applauded “recognition” by HHS of oral health as a leading indicator of the overall health of the U.S. population.

The leading health indicators are outlined in Healthy People 2020 and are selected to communicate high-priority health issues and actions that can be taken to address them. The oral health leading health indicator is “to increase the proportion of children, adolescents and adults who used the oral health care system in the past 12 months.” (OH-7)

The Healthy People goal-setting effort provides science-based, 10-year national objectives for improving the health of all Americans. For three decades, Healthy People has established benchmarks and monitored progress in order to encourage collaborations across sectors, guide individuals toward making informed health decisions, and measure the impact of prevention activities.

For more information about the other 17 oral health goals included in Healthy People 2020, visit

FDA, CDC and EPA updates

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