Frequently Asked Questions About LANAP
With LANAP, it is considered a minimally invasive procedure with no cutting or sewing of gum tissue. A fiberoptic tip is placed below the gum-line that kills the bacteria that populate the root surface and gum tissue. Then the root surfaces are thoroughly cleaned and the bacteria is flushed out of the pocket with a disinfectant and an ultrasonic instrument. The laser is reset to a “clotting” setting, then the fiberoptic tip is used below the gum-line to develop a stable clot. Finally, the chewing surfaces of the teeth are adjusted to relieve heavy forces that may disrupt healing. There are NO incisions and NO suturing with LANAP. Traditional gum surgery cuts away diseased bone and gum tissue instead of disinfecting and regenerating bone and gum tissue. Then the gum tissue is sutured back to a position lower on the tooth. Suture removal is typically done 1-2 weeks following the surgery.
Periodontal pockets are generally reduced by 50% and bone regeneration is entirely possible! There are numerous clinical and histological reports of bone regrowth and regeneration following LANAP. So, for example, 8mm pockets are typically reduced to 4mm pockets. Over 1-2 years, the x-rays will show evidence of bone fill in regions where there was previous bone loss.
Gum surgery for periodontal disease is often referred to as pocket reduction surgery, osseous surgery or resective surgery. What these all have in common is that gum and bone tissue is removed. As a result, roots become partially exposed—which are very sensitive to cold, food can get impacted between the teeth and there are aesthetic compromises. LANAP does not remove any gum or bone tissue, in fact, it regenerates bone! So there is typically much less if any root sensitivity, food impaction or aesthetic compromise. That being said, depending upon the severity of periodontal disease, all patients respond differently.
Periodontal disease is a chronic disease that needs constant maintenance, similar to diabetes. Regular home compliance and cleanings at your dental office are necessary to keep periodontitis from progressing. A patient might benefit from LANAP again in the future depending upon compliance and the ability to respond to treatment. If a patient has had traditional gum surgery and would benefit from surgery again, the patient is most frequently unwilling to go through the process again. Patients are often more accepting of retreatment with LANAP if necessary. Again, periodontal disease is a chronic disease that will become active with the slightest opportunity.
Dr. Staadecker has treated several patients that have had periodontal disease relapse requiring additional treatment. Patients that have most recently been treated with LANAP typically comment “that was nothing compared to the last time…”
Yes, there are well-documented clinical cases of bone regeneration with implants that are considered “ailing.” In fact, laser treatment may be one of the most predictable approaches to treat an implant with bone loss. The reason for the bone loss needs to determined first however. The laser is very effective in detoxifying the implant surface to allow future bone regrowth.
We find that our patients experience little if any root sensitivity following LANAP. Root exposure or recession is typically related to root sensitivity—particularly cold sensitivity. The gum tissue generally remains at the same level on the root following LANAP as it was initially. However with resolution of gum inflammation, it may be possible for some recession and root sensitivity to occur.
It generally takes one or two visit(s) between 1-2 hours each visit. We always recommend a follow-up visit and routine periodontal maintenance. As with any treatment approach, it is both a time and financial investment. Follow-up cleanings in the dental office every 3 months is a part of insuring your investment.
We recommend a soft diet for two days. Many patients feel good enough to eat anything they want after the procedure, however, we encourage a soft diet with cold to room temperature food to ensure optimal healing.
Typically patients feel that they are comfortable enough to return to work after a 24 hour recovery period. Everyone responds slightly different, so be prepared to give yourself enough time to recover if needed.

About Us

Our promise is to provide our patients with high quality, attentive and individualized care in order to promote complete health. By employing cutting-edge technology, state of the art procedures and traditional practice, we are able to meet – more often exceed – the expectations of patients and referring doctors.

Contact Us

Newport Beach Periodontics
Dr. Coury Staadecker
1441 Avocado Ave, Suite 405
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Phone: (949) 640-9475
Fax: (949) 640-2621