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LGE versus conventional gingivitis
May 17, 2000

How is LGE differentiated from conventional gum disease? I noticed that I was not brushing (or flossing!) the inner parts of my far back teeth very well. They constantly felt like they were coated with gunk. I started brushing and flossing better - but when I looked back there with a dental mirror I noticed that the gums closest to the teeth were pinker in color (in contrast to the very pale pink areas around them). I do not get any bleeding - either spontaneously or when brushing or flossing. I read that it can be difficult to distinguish these two forms of gingivitis. I also read that HIV- people can present with some red banding, but it's generally less pronounced and doesn't bleed quite as easily or spontaneously. Please clarify!!

Thank you so much!

Response from Dr. Reznik

Linear Gingival Erythema (LGE) present as *red* bands around the neck of the teeth, usually no more than a few millimeters in width (although I have seen several examples of a more pronounced presentation) , and is normally seen in immunocompromised individuals. LGE can occur without the presence of plaque or debris in people with good oral hygiene. This differs from "conventional gingivitis" which is normally seen in association with poor oral hygiene and/or lack of professional intervention such as routine dental cleanings and exams. To date, research has not shown any abnormal bacteria or other pathogens to be the cause of this condition. There was a theory put forth by the late Dr. Jens Pinborg, which I believe has merit, who believed that LGE may in part be due to the presence of the Candida species, the organisms associated with thrush. There are numerous examples of LGE contained with the HIVdent Picture Gallery of Oral Manifestations.

Treatment for LGE would involve a professional dental cleaning and the use of a chlorhexidine mouth wash such as PerioGard twice a day for two weeks.

I hope this information proves helpful!

DR


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