This study evaluated the relationship between the presence of gingival bleeding, gingival suppuration, and supragingival plaque at 3 month appointments to the incidence of probing attachment loss during a 2-year period of maintenance therapy. The data included in this report were taken during the second and third year of maintenance from 75 periodontal patients who had previously received active therapy in an ongoing longitudinal study. The diagnostic sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values were calculated for different frequencies of positive responses for each clinical parameter in relation to sites demonstrating greater than or equal to 2 mm probing attachment loss. Gingival bleeding and plaque were not prognosticators and gingival suppuration was a weak prognosticator of attachment loss during a 2 year maintenance period.
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