Surgical treatment of bisphosphonate-associated osteonecrosis: Prognostic score and long-term results

Over a century after the first synthesis of bisphosphonates (1897) and a decade (2003) since the initial report on bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ), this osteopathy remains a serious clinical challenge.

A single center longitudinal study (2005-2014) was carried out to prospectively characterize inpatients with manifest ONJ and to evaluate their outcomes. The data recorded were: medical history, bisphosphonate treatment, localization, imaging, treatment, histomorphological features, and complications. A prognostic score (modified UCONN-Score) was adopted to predict outcomes. Eighty patients were included (mean age 69. 4 years; 40 male, 40 female). Breast cancer (n = 25), multiple myeloma (n = 16), and prostate cancer (n = 15) were the three most common malignancies; and cardiovascular disease (n = 31), diabetes mellitus (16), and renal disorders (6) were the most important comorbidities. The severity of ONJ was stage I in three patients, stage II in 37, and stage III in 40, being predominantly localized in the posterior mandible and needing gradual resection. The average duration of bisphosphonate treatment was 38. 3 months. The typical histological aspects of ONJ were predominantly osteonecrosis, bone marrow fibrosis, and bacterial colonization (Actinomyces) with suppurative inflammation. Within the resected jawbone a primary malignancy was diagnosed in two cases. The overall success rate was 83. 6% (follow-up 23. 5 months), with a UCONN-Score ≥15 predicting unfavorable treatment results (OR = 5. 2). The past decade has enhanced experience with ONJ treatment and knowledge about its pathogenesis, which seems to be a multistep process. This study demonstrates the importance of bone and multilayer soft tissue management, preferably as an early intervention. The UCONN-Score might help to assess individual prognosis in ONJ surgery and the potential benefit of an antiresorptive drug holiday. To our knowledge it is the first use of a prognostic score in ONJ surgery.

Journal of cranio-maxillo-facial surgery : official publication of the European Association for Cranio-Maxillo-Facial Surgery. 2015 Aug 06 [Epub ahead of print]

Waldemar Reich, Udo Bilkenroth, Johannes Schubert, Claudia Wickenhauser, Alexander Walter Eckert

Department of Oral and Plastic Maxillofacial Surgery (Temporary Head: Prof. Dr. Dr. Alexander Walter Eckert, MD, DMD, PhD), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube Str. 40, 06120 Halle (Saale), Germany.  Institute of Pathology Lutherstadt Eisleben (Head: Dr. Udo Bilkenroth, MD, PhD), Hohetorstr. 25, 06295 Lutherstadt, Eisleben, Germany. , Department of Oral and Plastic Maxillofacial Surgery (Temporary Head: Prof. Dr. Dr. Alexander Walter Eckert, MD, DMD, PhD), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube Str. 40, 06120 Halle (Saale), Germany. , Institute of Pathology (Head: Prof. Dr. Claudia Wickenhauser, MD, PhD), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Magdeburger Str. 14, 06112 Halle (Saale), Germany.  Department of Oral and Plastic Maxillofacial Surgery (Temporary Head: Prof. Dr. Dr. Alexander Walter Eckert, MD, DMD, PhD), Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube Str. 40, 06120 Halle (Saale), Germany.  

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