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J Periodontol. 1986 Jan;57(1):48-50.

Repigmentation of the gingiva following surgical injury.


Oral melanin pigmentation is not uncommon in some races and ethnic groups. Repigmentation of depigmented oral mucosa has been described after chemical, thermal, surgical, pharmacologic or idiopathic factors. Information on the repigmentation of oral tissues after surgical procedures is extremely limited. The communication reports on gingival repigmentation over a 7 to 8 year period following removal of gingival tissues. Pigmented keratinized gingiva was removed in two Jewish Yemanite adult males, who had moderate or heavily pigmented gingiva. After surgery, the exposed lamina propria was covered by periodontal pack for 7 to 10 days. The tissues were then observed periodically for signs of repigmentation. Healing was uneventful and the surgically treated areas in both patients remained depigmented over the first 2 years. After 32 months, some pigmentation was found in one of the patients, and with the exception of two limited sites, the area was completely repigmented after 7 years. The surgically treated area in the second patient remained depigmented over an 8-year follow-up period. These observations agree with previous reports that describe gingival pigmentation as spontaneous and suggest that further controlled experimental studies be undertaken to explore the biologic basis for repigmentation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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