Efficacy of antimicrobial photodynamic therapy in the management of chronic periodontitis: a randomized controlled clinical trial

J Clin Periodontol. 2014 Jun;41(6):573-81. doi: 10.1111/jcpe.12249. Epub 2014 Apr 10.


Aim: To evaluate the potential of antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) as an adjunct to scaling and root planing (SRP) in the treatment of chronic periodontitis.

Material and methods: In a single-centred randomized and controlled clinical trial, 90 patients (51 females and 39 males) with untreated chronic periodontitis were randomly assigned to receive SRP with aPDT (test group) or SRP alone (control group). Clinical parameters and halitosis were recorded for 6 months after treatment by a periodontist who was blinded to the procedure.

Results: Inter-group and intra-group statistical analyses were performed. Significant difference between the two groups with respect to each variable was assessed using non-parametric Rank Order ancova. Probing pocket depth and clinical attachment levels showed statistically significant reduction in the test group on evaluation at 3 months and 6 months as compared to the control group (p < 0.05). A statistically significant improvement in gingival index and gingival bleeding index was seen for the test group after 2 weeks and 1 month of aPDT (p < 0.01), whereas the improvement in gingival index and gingival bleeding index at 3 months and in plaque index at 2 weeks after aPDT was less (p < 0.05). Also, a significant difference was detected for the test group at 1 month in terms of halitosis (p < 0.05), which did not persist for long.

Conclusions: Antimicrobial photodynamic therapy acts as a beneficial adjunct to SRP in non-surgical treatment and management of chronic periodontitis in short-term. Further studies are required to assess the long-term effectiveness of aPDT.

Keywords: adjunctive periodontal treatment; halitosis; methylene blue; periodontal disease; photodynamic therapy; randomized controlled trial.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Chronic Periodontitis / drug therapy*
  • Chronic Periodontitis / therapy
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Dental Plaque Index
  • Dental Scaling / methods
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gingival Recession / drug therapy
  • Gingival Recession / therapy
  • Halitosis / drug therapy
  • Halitosis / therapy
  • Humans
  • Lasers, Semiconductor / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Methylene Blue / therapeutic use
  • Periodontal Attachment Loss / drug therapy
  • Periodontal Attachment Loss / therapy
  • Periodontal Index
  • Periodontal Pocket / drug therapy
  • Periodontal Pocket / therapy
  • Photochemotherapy / methods*
  • Photosensitizing Agents / therapeutic use
  • Root Planing / methods


  • Photosensitizing Agents
  • Methylene Blue