Combined mechanical and antibiotic periodontal therapy in a case of Papillon-Lefèvre syndrome

J Periodontol. 2001 Apr;72(4):542-9. doi: 10.1902/jop.2001.72.4.542.


Background: Papillon Lefèvre syndrome (PLS) is a rare entity and, as such, it is almost impossible to evaluate an effective therapy in a randomized controlled study. The amount of success reported after therapy for prepubertal periodontitis (PP) in PLS is highly variable from case to case. The goal of this case report is to evaluate the effects of a combined mechanical and antibiotic periodontal therapy regimen in the management of PLS.

Methods: A male patient was diagnosed as suffering from PP associated with PLS at the age of 7 years. He showed hyperkeratosis of the palms and soles, as well as advanced periodontal disease already affecting permanent teeth with maximal probing depth and vertical attachment loss of 12 mm and 11 mm, respectively. Subgingival debridement was performed with simultaneous administration of oral 250 mg amoxicillin 3 times daily and 250 mg metronidazole twice daily for one week. Clinical parameters were assessed and subgingival plaque was collected from all teeth prior to therapy and 7 and 26 months after treatment. Selective cultures for A. actinomycetemcomitans were incubated for each individual tooth and DNA probe analysis was performed for various periodontal pathogens.

Results: Prior to combined mechanical and antibiotic treatment, all teeth but one harbored Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans subgingivally. However, at 7 and 26 months after therapy A. actinomycetemcomitans could be detected neither by culture nor by DNA probes. Clinical parameters improved markedly and teeth erupting after therapy did not exhibit attachment loss of more than 1.5 mm during the observation period.

Conclusions: Eradication (suppression beneath detection levels) of A. actinomycetemcomitans seems to play a significant role in the successful treatment of localized prepubertal periodontitis in PLS.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans / drug effects
  • Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans / growth & development
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / drug therapy
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / microbiology
  • Aggressive Periodontitis / therapy*
  • Amoxicillin / therapeutic use
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Colony Count, Microbial
  • Dental Plaque / microbiology
  • Dental Plaque / therapy
  • Dental Scaling
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metronidazole / therapeutic use
  • Papillon-Lefevre Disease / complications*
  • Penicillins / therapeutic use*
  • Periodontal Attachment Loss / drug therapy
  • Periodontal Attachment Loss / therapy
  • Periodontal Pocket / drug therapy
  • Periodontal Pocket / therapy
  • Puberty
  • Root Planing
  • Subgingival Curettage


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Penicillins
  • Metronidazole
  • Amoxicillin