Periodontal Disease: Guided Tissue Regeneration (GTR)
Teeth are held in place by surrounding gums, bone, and other tissues. But periodontal disease can cause the bone to break down. Certain techniques called regenerative procedures can be used to stimulate growth of new bone. This growth increases the height of the bone around the tooth, giving the tooth more support. Getting back even half the lost bone height extends the life of the tooth. One type of regenerative procedure is called guided tissue regeneration (GTR).
How GTR Works
A special membrane is placed between gum and bone. This prevents gum tissue, which grows quickly, from filling the space where bone was lost. That way, new bone has time to grow where it’s needed. This is how GTR is done:
Surgery on gum and bone. The gum is opened. Then a membrane is placed over the damaged bone.
Separating tissues. Once in place between bone and gum, the membrane allows space for bone to heal.
After healing. The stitches and membrane dissolve or are removed. In about a year, bone forms to support the tooth.