Building Bridges in Periodontics: A Transcontinental Educational Exchange

Periodontics Group Picture

In February, a group of five postgraduate students specializing in Periodontology from the University of Ferrara, Italy, embarked on a three-week educational journey at the CWRU School of Dental Medicine. Their schedule was filled with attending classes and seminars, observing clinical practices, and exchanging insights with their counterparts in the Department of Periodontics, all under the guidance of Dr. Gian Pietro Schincaglia, a distinguished professor and leader within the department. Dr. Schincaglia, an alumnus of the University of Ferrara, played a pivotal role in orchestrating this cross-border educational exchange alongside Dr. Leonardo Trombelli, Professor and Chair of the Department of Periodontology at the University of Ferrara. Dr. Schincaglia and Dr. Trombelli have a long history of friendship and collaboration since the early ’90s when they worked together to establish the Periodontology Department at their alma mater.

This initiative is a testament to the enduring partnership between Dr. Schincaglia and Dr. Trombelli, aimed at advancing periodontics through shared knowledge and collaborative projects. Their efforts have led to establishing a reputable department at the University of Ferrara, including joint editorial work and the organization of knowledge exchange programs. Recently, Dr. Schincaglia shared his expertise at the University of Ferrara, and plans are underway for Dr. Trombelli to visit CWRU School of Dental Medicine, with both scholars eager to reignite their collaborative research endeavors.

According to Dr. Massimo Di Cesare, one of the visiting residents, this experience is set to enhance their teaching methodologies and clinical skills, highlighting the importance of pre-surgical discussions, literature sharing, and reflective practices. Dr. Angelo Ruffino, another visiting resident, noted the experience of the CWRU residents in sedation practices, observing the differences in sedation medication access and administration between the U.S. and Italy, as well as the advancements in implant robotic navigation and the absence of robotic devices in European practices. 

The visiting scholars also spent two weeks at the Complutense University of Madrid, further enriching their learning experience under the tutelage of Professors Mariano Sanz and David Herrera. In a reciprocal move, CWRU’s Periodontic residents will visit the University of Ferrara and participate in the Italian Society of Periodontology and Implantology annual meeting, presided over by Dr. Trombelli. This exchange is just one of many future collaborative initiatives to foster global partnerships and enhance dental professionals' educational landscape. Dr. Schincaglia remains a fervent advocate for such international collaborations, recognizing their value in broadening perspectives and enriching the professional growth of residents and faculty alike.