Periodontal diagnosis: the IMI method

IMI Clinic

periodontal diagnosis, pyorrhea diagnosis

IMI Clinic is involved not only in studying the treatments aimed at effectively and permanently overcoming the problem of periodontal disease, but also in diagnosing the disease with the help of modern and sophisticated methods.

In particular, alongside traditional clinical and radiographic diagnosis, IMI Clinic also combine sophisticated molecular biology tests that produce accurate and efficacious laboratory data, essential for formulating a tailor-made treatment for each patient.

The analysis of the causes that have given rise to the disease highlights the fundamental role played by bacteria in the onset of periodontitis. The identification of these micro-organisms has made it possible to clasify them in families or complexes organised as follows:

Red complex

  • Porphyromonas gingivalis
  • Tannerella forsythensis
  • Peptostreptococcus micros
  • Treponema denticola

Orange complex

  • Fusobacterium nucleatum
  • Prevotella intermedia
  • Campylobacter rectus

Green complex

  • Eikenella corrodens


A specific group of bacteria corresponds, both qualitatively and quantitatively, to each stage of periodontal disease that may be mild, moderate or severe.

Diagnostic tests of periodontitis

The tests that IMI clinic conduct on the patient to obtain a correct periodontal diagnosis are extremely accurate. In particular, we focus on a enzymatic test, microbiological test and a periodontal-disease risk test.

All these tests are completely painless and allow the doctor to take fundamental samples from the mouth that are then analysed in the molecular biology laboratory.

The enzymatic test for gum disease

MMP-8 is an enzyme capable of degrading the collagen of the extracellular matrix of the periodontal tissues: it is very useful to detect the early stages of inflammation of the periodontium. The test is painless and quick and allows the doctor to take a prompt action to prevent periodontal and peri-implant damages. The enzymatic test is the first step of the periodontal diagnostics: if the result is positive, it is important to investigate deeply the mouth situation withe the microbiological test.

Microbiological test

The microbiological test enables us to create a report that shows the presence of the main bacteria in the patient’s mouth. In two sector diagrams the percentage of pathogenic (bad) bacteria found in the total quantity of bacteria in the mouth is first grouped together, after which these pathogenic bacteria are assigned to the various groups they belong to. This allows the identification of a predominant category of microorganisms that “attack” the patient’s mouth. The microbiological test can be repeated several times, until the patient has made a complete recovery.

The periodontal-disease risk test

The periodontal-disease risk test is only performed once and its purpose to calculate the patient’s specific susceptibility to periodontal disease. Exfoliated cells (used to represent the health of the oral cavity) found in saliva are collected by wiping a small sponge on the inside of the cheek and on the tongue. Depending on the results of this test, the risk of periodontal disease can be classified as low, medium, intermediate, high, or very high.

IMI clinic also perform periodontal probing with the aim to prevent periodontitis. Periodontal probing reveals the bleeding, pus, and loose teeth and also measures the periodontal pockets and depth of receding gums.

Lastly, X-ray images are taken to determine the bone levels of the mandible and the jaw. We keep each patient’s periodontal data on file and update regularly.

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