Objective: To describe the tissue response to implanted polishing and prophylaxis materials using a rat model system. Material and methods: Two polishing pastes (diamond polishing paste and aluminum polishing paste), two prophylaxis materials (prophylaxis paste with fluoride and air polishing prophylaxis powder) and negative and positive controls were subcutaneously implanted in rats. Tissue specimens obtained after 2 days, 1, 4, 6 and 8 weeks after implantation were processed for routine hematoxylin and eosin staining and polarized light evaluation. Results: Air polishing prophylaxis powder produced a mild inflammatory response. A more intense inflammation was elicited by diamond polishing paste, and the prophylaxis paste with fluoride elicited an even greater response. The aluminum polishing paste produced the most severe and persistent tissue response, which was of the granulomatous type. Conclusions: This finding suggests that foreign body reaction should be considered in a gingivitis that does not respond to plaque control or does not represent a mucocutaneous lesion.
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