Glossary of Periodontal Terms

The Academy would like to thank the following for their assistance in updating the AAP's Glossary of Periodontal Terms.

Task Force to Update the Glossary of Periodontal Terms
Drs. Sharon R. Bannister, Chair and Douglas R. Dixon, Vice-Chair
Drs. James B. Barnes, Frederick C. Bisch, Casey M. Campbell, Margaret Hill, Robert A. Faiella, Cristina Cunha Villar, and S. Jerome Zackin.

Periodontal Postdoctoral Students and Faculty at the following institutions 

Baylor College of Dentistry, Georgia Health Science University. Louisiana State University. Naval Postgraduate Dental School, Ohio State University, Oregon Health Science University School of Dentistry, Tufts University, UCLA, University Louisville, University of Florida - College of Dentistry, University TN Health Science Center, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of Iowa, University of Kentucky, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, University of Pittsburgh, University of Texas Health Science Center- Houston, University of Texas Health Science Center- San Antonio, US Army, Wilford Hall 59th Medical Wing

AAP members are invited to post comments on terms by clicking on the term and using the comment feature at the bottom of the definition. The In-Service Examination Committee will review comments to identify terms that need to be updated and those updates will be posted to the Glossary.

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ABFRACTION: The hypothetical process leading to the loss of cervical tooth structure due to a combination of abrasion, erosion, and/or occlusal forces; data supporting this term as a discrete clinical entity are equivocal. See also ABRASION and EROSION.
ABRASION: The wearing away of tooth structure or restorative material through an abnormal mechanical process. Examples include gingival and dental abrasions due to incorrect brushing. #Diagnostic Terminology
ABSCESS: Localized collection of purulent exudate (pus) in a cavity formed by the disintegration of tissues due to an infectious process or foreign material.
ABSCESS: ACUTE ABSCESS: Abscess of rapid onset, typically producing pain and local inflammation. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine
ABSCESS: APICAL ABSCESS: Inflammatory condition characterized by formation of purulent exudate involving the dental pulp or pulpal remnants and the tissues surrounding the apex of a tooth. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine
ABSCESS: CHRONIC ABSCESS: 1. Abscess of comparatively slow development with little evidence of inflammation. There may be an intermittent discharge of purulent matter. 2. Long-standing collection of purulent exudate. It may follow an acute abscess. See also RESIDUAL ...
ABSCESS: GINGIVAL ABSCESS: A localized purulent infection that involves the marginal gingiva or interdental papilla. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine
ABSCESS: PERICORONAL ABSCESS: A localized purulent infection within the tissue surrounding the crown of a partially erupted tooth. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine
ABSCESS: PERIODONTAL ABSCESS: Localized purulent collection in the periodontal tissues; also called lateral periodontal abscess. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine
ABSCESS: PULPAL ABSCESS: Inflammation of the dental pulp characterized by the formation of purulent exudate. #OralPathologyandOralMedicine