Periodontal regeneration—treatment that results in new alveolar bone, cementum, and a functional periodontal ligament—is successful in class II furcation defects. This article examines one aspect of periodontal regeneration—alveolar bone growth in furcation defects—in trying to answer the question, Can bone lost from furcations be regenerated? The best evidence for bone growth is histology but there is limited histologic evidence for bone growth in human furcation defects. There is more evidence from intraoperative measurements for hard tissue growth in treated furcation defects, but the nature of the hard tissue needs to be determined histologically.
Histologic demonstration of new bone growth in furcations is the gold standard.
There is histologic evidence of new bone growth in experimental furcation defects in animal models and in a few reports of furcation defects in humans.
There are several reported human clinical trials that include surgical reentry and open measurement of furcation defects, but the nature of the hard tissue in the furcation needs to be determined by histology.
There is a need for more histologic analysis in human clinical studies to confirm the presence and to determine the extent of new bone growth in human furcation defects.