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Top Must-Have Prevention Technologies for Dentists

Dental Products ReportDental Products Report-2012-07-01
Issue 7

Dentists continue to search for new ways to provide their patients with better treatment. Advances in diagnostic technologies can help with this by allowing them to detect and monitor caries at its earliest stages.

Dentists continue to search for new ways to provide their patients with better treatment. Advances in diagnostic technologies can help with this by allowing them to detect and monitor caries at its earliest stages.

These newly-enhanced diagnostic devices also assist in making a more accurate caries diagnosis and provide better detection capabilities than radiography and the traditional explorer.

Our recent Tech Census Survey polled dental professionals about what type of, if any, caries detection and oral cancer screening devices they use and what their purchasing plans are for the future.

Out of 59 total respondents, 42% of them said they are currently using a high-tech caries detection device in their practice, while 50% of them also said they have an oral cancer screening device.

Seventy-five percent of 16 respondents said they purchased a high-tech, prevention-focused technology because it's the right thing for their patients.

Thirty-one percent of 22 respondents said they have not purchased a high-tech prevention system because they don't see the clear benefits associated with the purchase.

Here's a roundup of some of the best-performing diagnostic technologies that are currently available.

KaVo's DIAGNOdent Pen

The DIAGNOdent Pen is a laser fluorescence caries detection system that measures fluorescence of sound tooth structure compared to demineralized tooth structure. The DIAGNOdent Pen illuminates the tooth surface using a diode laser with a wavelength of 655 nanometers. As the laser enters the tooth surface it causes porphoryins and other chromophores to fluoresce. The DIAGNOdent system captures and analyzes this fluorescence. Porphoryins are given off as metabolites of bacteria, responsible for the carious process. Researchers have shown that porphoryins could be extracted from caries lesions and are useful in distinguishing sound tooth structure from caries affected teeth.

The DIAGNOdent system is accurate at finding caries when it indeed exists. The DIAGNOdent system has been studied extensively and the studies generally show it has a very high sensitivity rate as well as a high specificity rate when used on non contaminated surfaces. DIAGNOdent at times may show a false positive reading when an occlusal surface is contaminated with calculus, plaque, prophy pastes or other foreign materials. These debris should be cleaned off prior to scanning.

DENTSPLY Professional's Midwest Caries ID Detection Handpiece

Designed to aid in discovering interproximal and occlusal caries that might otherwise go undetected, the lightweight Midwest Caries ID detection handpiece uses proprietary LED and fiberoptic technology to positively identify caries using two clear signals: a visual signal on the tooth as well as an audible tone. The handpiece can help locate caries in pits, fissures and interproximal areas on posterior teeth that have not been restored.

Said to deliver an unmatched level of detection that can help clinicians craft and deliver improved patient treatment plans, the caries detection handpiece also locates lesions and decalcification in x-ray-adverse patients.




ACTEON North America's SoproLIFE

SoproLIFE is not only an aid for the detection of caries; it also has a mode for the treatment of the condition once a diagnosis is complete. Treatment Mode is available via a simple switch on the bottom side of the camera and once selected this mode clearly and definitively guides the practitioner through the complete removal of the affected tissues.

SoproLIFE, distributed by ACTEON North America, is the world’s first multi-function intraoral camera combining caries detection with a high-end intraoral video camera function.

SoproLIFE is a previous Pride Institute "Best of Class" honoree. According to, Tim Long, ACTEON National Sales Manager, the thing that stands out the most for SoproLIFE is its ability to be an intraoral camera with the highest quality, as well as diagnose and treat during the caries process.

Watch the video interview to see how the SoproLIFE works.

DentalEZ Group's Identafi

The multi-spectral Identafi® oral cancer screening device detects changes in cells of the mouth, throat, tongue and tonsils that could be signs of oral cancers. The small, cordless, handheld device uses white, 405 nm violet and green-amber light wavelengths to detect biochemical changes with fluorescence. Morphological changes are monitored using reflectance.

The Identafi system uses the Identafi Multi-Spectral Fluorescence and Reflectance technology to enhance visualization of mucosal abnormalities such as oral cancer or premalignant dysplasia that may not be apparent to the naked eye. Unlike other fluorescence technologies and dye systems, the Identafi is Multi-Spectral with three distinct color wavelengths, making it easier to distinguish lesion morphology and vasculature.



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