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Am J Dent. 2012 Feb;25(1):44-8.

Performance of laser fluorescence for the detection of enamel caries in non-cavitated occlusal surfaces: clinical study with total validation of the sample.

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  • 1Department of Dental Pathology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Seville, Seville, Spain.



To evaluate the clinical performance of a laser fluorescence device in detecting enamel caries in non-cavitated occlusal surfaces.


The sample included 96 first and second permanent molars, selected according to the criteria of Ekstrand: 44 not suspected of having dentin caries (score: 0-2) and 52 under suspicion (score: 3-4). Once measured by laser fluorescence, all teeth were validated by fissurotomy (gold standard). To avoid ethical questions, the 44 teeth (score: 0-2) used were to serve as abutments for a fixed dental prostheses. Following fissurotomy, the 52 teeth with suspected caries were treated with resin composite restorations. Kruskall-Wallis statistical analysis (P<0.05) was used.


Laser fluorescence showed an area under the Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve of Az = 0.803 for enamel caries. The cut-off point with the highest sensitivity and specificity was 15, with a sensitivity and specificity of 0.97 and 0.63, respectively. Values under 10 indicated healthy teeth.

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