Penn Dental Medicine

Continuing Education

Course Schedule » ARONJ: An Update

ARONJ: An Update

October 24-25, 2014 – MARK YOUR CALENDAR NOW!

Bisphosphonates, a class of drugs that prevent the loss of bone mass, are used to treat a variety of bone dissolution disorders – from osteoporosis and Paget’s disease to bone loss due to cancer. While these anti-resorptive medications can offer effective therapies, several have been associated with osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ) with a broad health impact and economic burden. The estimated incidence of bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (BRONJ) ranges as high as 10 to 15% in high-risk cancer patients. Since the first report of BRONJ in 2003, the slow progress in the diagnosis and treatment underscores the urgent need for translational and clinical research on this important topic.

This symposium features researchers and clinicians from both Penn Dental Medicine and Penn Medicine and is built on the multidisciplinary interaction between the different specialties engaged in research and clinical management of ONJ patients. The program will address gaps in our understanding of how anti-resorptive drugs may interfere with immune function, wound healing, and bone repair, and explore how to bridge these findings in the development of new prevention and intervention strategies for ONJ.

Course Objective

The purpose of this course is to provide dentists, physicians, and other health care providers knowledge and clinical skills in diagnosing and managing complications of anti-resorptive-drug-induced osteonecrosis of the jaw (ARONJ).

Following attendance of this program, participants should be able to:

  • Understand the pathophysiology of ARONJ — immunological deficiency, epithelial dysfunction, bacterial and biofilm concepts
  • Recognize risk factors associated with ARONJ
  • Recognize the complications associated with anti-resorptive drugs in high-risk patients
  • Understand the physiology of drug-associated bone remodeling and adverse effects
  • Update knowledge on the clinical manifestations and staging of ARONJ
  • Update knowledge in treatment planning those patients taking bisphosphonate therapy, including periodontal, implant, and periapical surgery
  • Update knowledge in the clinical and radiographic diagnosis of ARONJ
  • Update knowledge on new research and diagnostic biomarkers of ARONJ
  • Update knowledge on nonsurgical and surgical approaches to the management of ARONJ
  • Introduction to new therapeutic strategies of the future, including stem cell therapies


Pamela Rice
Office of Continuing Education
Penn Dental Medicine

PLEASE NOTE: Symposium location has changed to Penn Dental Medicine. Get directions »

The Robert Schattner Center
University of Pennsylvania
School of Dental Medicine
240 South 40th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6030