ORAL PATHOLOGY : Treating young patients with ectodermal dysplasia: A prosthetic dilemma

Children afflicted with ED will have an abnormal appearance, and they often suffer from low self-esteem.

They tend to have thin, light-colored, sparse hair; smooth, dry, and thin skin; and missing teeth.

The most distinguishing oral characteristics include hypodontia or anodontia, hypoplastic conical teeth, and underdevelopment of the alveolar ridges.

These patients may also suffer from malocclusion, periodontal damage, reduced chewing ability, nutritional deficiencies, and speech problems.

Those complications can make decisions on treatment especially difficult.

Read Also : ORTHODONTIC : Guiding Unerupted Teeth into Occlusion: Case Report

The developmental challenges with ED lead to complicated and expensive prosthetic treatment lasting several years. Prosthodontic treatment goals are aimed at creating a normal dental appearance so the patient’s physiologic and psychosocial well-being are preserved.

AJ Nowak stated in the Birth Defects Research Journal: “Treating the pediatric patient with ED requires the clinician to be knowledgeable in growth and development, behavioral management, techniques in the fabrication of a prosthesis, the modifications of existing teeth utilizing composite resins, the ability to motivate the patient and parent in the use of the prosthesis, and the long-term follow-up for the modification and/or replacement of the prosthesis.”


By Kim Daxon, DDS

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