Insufficient evidence to determine if orthodontic treatment is more or less efficient with self-ligating brackets than conventional brackets

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This critical summary of a systematic review published in 2010 was prepared under the auspices of the American Dental Association Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry.

The aim of this review was  see whether  the use of using self-ligating brackets (SLBs)  improved clinical outcomes in orthodontic treatment compared with conventional brackets (CBs).

The commentator  noted that despite an extensive search  there were some reporting and methodological problems with the review along with  heterogeneity as a result of the variations of SLBs in use.

A range of outcomes were assessed but most were not directly related to treatment outcome or patient satisfaction. Overall  there  was limited evidence to support the use of one bracket type over another.

Go to the  ADA Critical Summary

Go to the PubMed abstract of the original review

Related review

Ehsani S, Mandich MA, El-Bialy TH, Flores-Mir C. Frictional resistance in self-ligating orthodontic brackets and conventionally ligated brackets. A systematic review. Angle Orthod. 2009 May;79(3):592-601. Review. PubMed PMID: 19413397.



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Derek Richards

Derek Richards is a specialist in dental public health, Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Dentistry and Specialist Advisor to the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) Development Team. A former editor of the Evidence-Based Dentistry Journal and chief blogger for the Dental Elf website until December 2023. Derek has been involved with a wide range of evidence-based initiatives both nationally and internationally since 1994. Derek retired from the NHS in 2019 remaining as a part-time senior lecturer at Dundee Dental School until the end of 2023.

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