Dental pulp testing methods: which is best?

Pulp test

This review of dental pulp test accuracy included 28 studies. While the findings suggest that laser doppler flowmetry and pulse oximitery are the most accurate the quality of the available studies is low.

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Digital imaging for caries: direct digital sensors or photostimulable phosphor plates?

shutterstock_82183270-taking x-ray

This review compared direct digital sensors and indirect photostimulable phosphor plates for the detection of caries. Six studies were included in the review with 4 contributing to the meta-analysis. There was no significant difference between the two systems and they displayed good specificity and limited sensitivity.

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Radiographic caries detection is highly accurate for cavitated proximal lesions

shutterstock_19887505 - perio xrays

This review of 117 studies, which were mainly in vitro studies (93), found radiographic caries detection to be highly accurate for cavitated proximal lesions and also suitable to detect dentine caries lesions.

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Caries detection: visual detection has good accuracy

occlusal caries, molar teeth

This review included 102 studies the majority (77%) being laboratory-based findings that visual inspection had good caries detection accuracy in primary and permanent teeth, with a trend for higher specificity than sensitivity.

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Oral Cancer diagnosis: biopsy and histology still best method

herpetic ulcer on tongue

This Cochrane review of adjunctive diagnostic tests for oral cancer included 41 studies assessing vital staining, cytology, and light-based tests. The available studies were of poor quality detection with none of the tests being considered as a replacement for the currently used standard of a scalpel biopsy and histological assessment.

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Dental screening: a role for hygiene-therapists?

shutterstock_45382273

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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