What do PSR scores mean?

Answered by Antonio Sutton

PSR scores, also known as Periodontal Screening and Recording scores, are used to assess the progress and severity of periodontitis, a gum disease that affects the supporting structures of the teeth. These scores provide valuable information to dentists and periodontists in determining the appropriate treatment plan for each individual.

The PSR system uses codes ranging from 0 to 4 to indicate the condition of the periodontal tissues and the need for treatment. Let’s dive into what each code signifies:

1. Code 0: This means there is no bleeding or calculus (tartar) detected in the periodontal pockets. It indicates healthy gums and no immediate need for treatment.

2. Code 1: This indicates that bleeding is observed after probing the periodontal pockets. While bleeding may indicate inflammation, it does not necessarily mean that treatment is immediately required. Code 1 is a warning sign that the gums need closer attention and regular monitoring.

3. Code 2: When the probe detects calculus or tartar within the periodontal pockets, it is assigned a code 2. Calculus is a hard deposit that forms on the teeth due to the mineralization of plaque. Code 2 suggests the presence of early to moderate periodontitis and may require professional cleaning (scaling and root planing) to remove the calculus and prevent further progression of the disease.

4. Code 3: This code indicates the presence of calculus and potential deepening of the periodontal pockets. Code 3 suggests moderate periodontitis, and treatment may involve more extensive scaling and root planing, along with additional therapies like antimicrobial agents or localized antibiotic delivery, depending on the severity.

5. Code 4: When the probe reaches the bottom of the periodontal pocket and encounters a hard deposit (calculus or bone), it is assigned a code 4. This signifies advanced periodontitis with significant pocket depths and potential bone loss. Treatment will likely include scaling and root planing, possible surgical intervention, and ongoing periodontal maintenance.

In addition to the codes above, the PSR system also considers whether or not treatment is needed. This is indicated by the letter “T” following the code. For example, a score of 3T would indicate the need for treatment due to moderate periodontitis.

It is important to note that the PSR scores are used as a screening tool and do not provide a comprehensive evaluation of the entire mouth. Further assessments, including full periodontal charting and radiographic examinations, may be required to diagnose and plan comprehensive treatment.

PSR scores provide a standardized method for assessing the severity of periodontitis and determining the need for treatment. The codes 0 to 4 represent different stages of the disease, with increasing severity and potential treatment requirements. Regular monitoring and appropriate intervention based on these scores can help manage periodontal disease and maintain oral health.