Dental screening: a role for hygiene-therapists?


This study compared the diagnostic accuracy of dental screening by hygiene-therapists with dentists. The results show that they could be used to screen for caries and periodontal disease. This could allow for a change in the traditional model of dental care seen in the UK.

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Review suggests that Cone Beam Computed Tomography may have role in diagnosis of root fractures

shutterstock_63657280 - Panoramic x-ray machine

While Computed Tomography (CT) is a well-established diagnostic tool in many areas of medicine it is only since the development of Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) that is use in dentistry is beginning to be explored.  2012 saw the publication of new European evidence-based guidelines on CBCT for dental and maxillofacial radiology as a result [read the full story…]

Fluorescence-based caries detection methods need more work to establish diagnostic accuracy

shutterstock_34500700 - caries sign

Earlier this week (Dental Elf 15th Oct 2013) we looked at a systematic review that looked at a range of the newer aids for detecting caries.  The aim of this review was to synthesize the findings about the accuracy of fluorescence-based methods in detecting caries lesions on occlusal, approximal and smooth surfaces of both permanent [read the full story…]

Visual examination still the best way of detecting early carious lesions

shutterstock_67512859 - dental examination

Yesterday we looked at the management of large carious lesions and today we are considering the other end of the caries process, the detection of the early or non-cavitated carious lesion (NCCLs).   With changes in the severity of dental disease in some population there has been more interest in the identification and management of the [read the full story…]

New Cochrane Protocols for December 2012


December brings two new protocols to the Cochrane Library from the Cochrane Oral Health Group. The first of these:-  Liu JLY, Walsh T, Kerr AR, Lingen M, Brocklehurst P, Ogden G, Warnakulasuriya S, Scully C. Diagnostic tests for oral cancer and potentially malignant disorders in patients presenting with clinically evident lesions (Protocol). Cochrane Database of [read the full story…]

Minor salivary gland biopsy in the diagnosis of Sjögren’s syndrome


Sjögren’s syndrome (SS) is one potential cause of dry mouth.  It is thought to affect 0.5-1% of the population and is more common in females (M/F ratio 1:9).  SS is an autoimmune disease characterised by chronic T- and B-cell infiltration of the salivary glands or lachrymal glands that results in gland dysfunction.   SS has a [read the full story…]

Evidence for the efficacy of clinical methods to assess dry mouth is sparse


Salivary is a complex substance than contains electrolytes, mucus, glycoproteins, enzymes, lysosomes and immunoglobulin. Its normal production is considered important for oral health.  The aim of this review was to evaluate the quality of the evidence for the efficacy of diagnostic methods used to identify oral dryness. The authors searched the PubMed, Cochrane Library and [read the full story…]

No diagnostic benefit from routine screening with panoramic radiographs


More than 50% of dental practitioners are thought to use panoramic radiographs  to screen their new adult patients. While the UK Faculty of General Dental Practitioners recommend  the use of intra-oral radiographs  for the assessment of the adult dentate patient for the presence of caries, periodontal bone loss and apical pathology.  One of the aims [read the full story…]

Ultrasonography has acceptable diagnostic efficacy for detection of temporomandibular joint disc displacement


Temporomandibular disorders (TMDs) result in craniofacial pain, limited mouth opening, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) clicks affecting the joint and related structures.  A prevalence of between 10% to 70% has been reported, and it particularly effects women aged 20 to 40 years. TMDs can be classified into muscular disorders, internal derangement (ID), inflammatory disease, and osteoarthritis. Internal [read the full story…]

Limited research about what distinguishes treatable from nontreatable pulpal inflammation in teeth

anatomy of teeth

Accurate diagnosis of the condition  of the dental pulp  has an important bearing on treatment planning.  The aim of this review was to appraise the diagnostic accuracy of signs/symptoms and tests used to determine the condition of the pulp in teeth affected by deep caries, trauma or other types of injury. The authors searched PubMed, [read the full story…]