Aim: To systematically evaluate the efficacy of chlorhexidine (CHX) mouthrinses on plaque, gingival inflammation and staining in gingivitis patients.
Material & methods: Medline, EMBASE and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were searched through April 2011. Randomized controlled clinical trials comparing CHX to placebo/control mouthrinses or oral hygiene (OH) ≥ 4 weeks were included.
Results: Among 1355 titles, 30 publications fulfilled the selection criteria. Meta-analysis (MA) showed significant weighted mean differences (WMD) favouring CHX. This was -0.39 [95% CI: -0.70; -0.08] for the Plaque Index Silness & Löe, -0.67 [95% CI: -0.82; -0.52] for the Plaque-Index Quigley & Hein (PIQH), -0.32 [95% CI: -0.42; -0.23] for the Gingival Index (GI), -0.08 [95% CI: -0.10; -0.05] for the bleeding aspect of the GI, -0.21 [95% CI: -0.37; -0.04] for the Papillary BIeeding Index, -0.16 [95% CI: -0.26; -0.07] for Bleeding on Marginal Probing and 0.91 [95% CI: 0.12;1.70] for the Lobene Stain Index. MA of studies with a low risk of author-estimated bias showed a WMD of -0.68 [95% CI: -0.85; -0.51] for the PIQH and -0.24 [95% CI: -0.29; -0.20] for the GI in favour of CHX. Relative to control, the reduction with CHX for plaque was 33% and for gingivitis 26%. CHX rinsing groups demonstrated significantly more staining.
Conclusions: In gingivitis patients, CHX mouthrinses together with OH versus placebo- or control mouthrinse provide significant reductions in plaque and gingivitis scores, but a significant increase in staining score.
© 2012 John Wiley & Sons A/S.