The patient’s medical history is quite important and needs to be critically reviewed before any dental treatment is performed. More often than not, their standard “no” answer is met with indifference so as we can continue onto the next step. However, it is necessary to know our patient’s medical history as the medications or treatments they received before any dental procedures could affect their gum health and treatment.

One of the medications that has devastating effect on the jaw bone, especially if taken intravenously (IV) are the biphosphates. Biphosphates are often taken by people who are experiencing osteopenia, osteoporosis and also by cancer patients. Although effective for such conditions, biphosphates come with some risks. The dental risk mentioned here is called Osteonecrosis of the Jaw (ONJ) or more commonly known as the “death of the jawbone.”