Antibiotic Prophylaxis for Dental Patients Essay

Antibiotic Prophylaxis for Dental Patients Essay

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Dental practitioners take action to minimize the risk of a disease from certain procedures that may allow bacteria from the mouth to enter the bloodstream. Antibiotic premedication therapy is a prophylactic measure that prevents bacteria from being released into the blood stream. The bacteria can infect the heart lining, as well as the valves or blood vessels, causing them to become inflamed. Infective endocarditis (IE), the name for the inflammation, has the potential to be fatal or debilitating. The risk of developing IE can happen from a combi¬nation of high-risk patients and dental procedures. While this is not an issue for most patients, some do require protection. The American Heart Association recommends antibiotic premedication therapy before dental procedures. But only for those whose cardiac conditions as well as a few other conditions are associated with the highest risk of adverse outcome.3
To know who and why a patient will need antibiotic premedication therapy, the hygienist has to keep an accurate and up to date patient history. It is significant because the oral conditions reflect the general health of the patient, common health factors influence response to treatment, and the patients health is constantly changing.1 Preventative antibiotics before a dental procedure are advised for patients with underlying cardiac conditions, a history of IE, and total joint replacements who have suppressed immune systems. Conditions that require premedication include:3
A. Congenital heart disease, but only the following types:
a. Unrepaired Cyanotic Congenital Heart Disease
Cyanotic heart disease is a heart defect, present at birth that results in low blood oxygen levels. With a series of surgeries, this condition is usually tr...

... middle of paper ...

...ot prescribed for individuals with immediate-type hypersensitivity reaction (urticarial, angioedema, or anaphylaxis) to penicillins or ampicillin.i
As stated above, the risk of developing IE can happen from a combination of high-risk patients and certain dental procedures. Antibiotic premedication therapy is valuable to those who require it. The clinician will work with the patients physician and take a close look at the up-to-date medical history and what kind of dental treatment will be carried out to ensure that the proper safety information can be utilized.

Works Cited

1Wilkins, Esther M. (2013). Clinical Practice of the Dental Hygienist
2American Dental Association
3 American Heart Association (2013) Retrieved from

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