PLR Introduction

The Periodontal Literature Review: The Next Generation is a living document and will be continuously updated as sections are added and reviews of new, relevant research are published.

One of the most important elements of any post-graduate training is the Literature Review Program. This particular course has been a part of the Periodontology training programs at all major institutions for decades. An important resource in the review of "classic" literature was and still is the Periodontal Literature Reviews: a summary of current knowledge (PLR). This volume has been a required reading for our program since its publication since 1996. This book was not only a useful text for students preparing for their board examinations but was also a wonderful reference guide for the practicing periodontist. However, as with any type-set book, the material held within is stagnant. Millions of pages have been written on the treatment of periodontal disease and tooth loss since 1996 yet there is no resource available that has continuously updated “classic” literature since that time.

Therefore, the American Academy of Periodontology sought to find a way to update this invaluable guide. Our proposal from the University of Toronto Department of Periodontology was to create a “web-based” document that would allow for continuous updating and editing, such that the website might be considered a “living document” for all post-graduate students studying for their board exams as well as practicing dentists and periodontists who want to read up on a particular topic. The website should not only be a complement to the original version of the text, but it should also broaden the scope of subjects as well as provide enhanced visual capabilities and ease of navigation to match the available technology of today. By providing an electronic version of the review, direct links to the articles being reviewed are embedded within the text and thus made available within an instant of a click allowing students to critically evaluate the original material - a real tenant of this educational endeavor.

Articles were selected through a web-based search using key words and titles for the various topics to be discussed. Articles were read and reviewed by residents of the University of Toronto’s Graduate Program in Periodontology and selected based on their clinical relevance. As with the original 1996 textbook developed by the Air Force Residency Program, this version was also meant to provide an overview of the subject only and was not meant to be as a comprehensive as a textbook on a given subject.

We hope that this website will continue to expand and prove to be a useful resource for students and teachers alike.

Dr. Michael B. Goldberg
Assistant Professor, Faculty of Dentistry
University of Toronto