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Article: Krazy glue, great for dentures, helps stop bleeding DR. JERRY GORDON
After more than six decades, this super sticky substance has found a new role in the treatment of dental patients.

Krazy glue is a convenient product that can temporarily repair broken dentures, help stop bleeding after dental surgery, and I've heard it also has hundreds of other every day uses. The active ingredient in Krazy glue (also Super glue) is a chemical called cyanoacrylate. Cyanoacrylate was discovered by Dr. Harry Coover while working for Kodak Research Laboratories to develop an optically clear plastic for gunsights in 1942. After more than six decades, this super sticky substance has found a new role in the treatment of dental patients.

The most common use of Krazy glue is for repairing or replacing denture teeth. Krazy glue can temporarily repair a broken denture tooth, and also refasten a tooth that has come off a denture. In some cases, Krazy glue can fix a denture that has broken in half, but this is also a very temporary measure. People who need lasting denture repairs should see their dentist or dental laboratory technician as soon as possible.

A recent study in the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery has shown that medical grade cyanoacrylate can help stop bleeding in patients who have had several teeth removed and were taking the blood thinner warfarin. For many years, it was "standard operating procedure" for physicians and dentists to have patients stop taking their warfarin for a few days before a surgical dental procedure. The reason is that warfarin can cause a person to bleed more after dental surgery. Warfarin and other blood thinners are used for a variety of medical reasons. They are principally used to prevent stroke, heart attack, thrombosis and embolism (stationary or traveling blood clots that can block blood vessels killing body tissues). For this reason, the patient's physician and dentist must decide if taking a person off warfarin is more hazardous than keeping them on their medication.

The need to stop patients from bleeding after oral surgery is especially important when a patient is taking warfarin or any other blood thinner. The use of medical grade cyanoacrylate in addition to packing and stitching the mouth after oral surgery has shown promise in a current study. This finding could allow patients to stay on their blood thinners more often when oral surgery is required, and prevent the potential risks of taking them off their medication.

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Dr. Gordon is the dental columnist for the Bucks County Courier Times. He has published more than 300 articles since 1998. Dr. Gordon was recently asked to provide commentary about mid-level providers for the influential dental journal Dental Abstracts.

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