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Pediatr Dent. 2014 Jul-Aug;36(4):348-54.

Role of microbiological factors in predicting early childhood caries.

Author information

1
Dental Public Health, Faculty of Dentistry, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.
2
Oral Sciences, Faculty of Dentistry, at the National University of Singapore, Singapore. denhsus@nus.edu.sg.
3
Oral Sciences, Faculty of Dentistry, at the National University of Singapore, Singapore.
4
Department of Decision Sciences, School of Business, at the National University of Singapore, Singapore.
5
PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam; Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, at the National University of Singapore, Singapore.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Microbiological methods that accurately identify caries-susceptible children may enhance caries control and assist treatment planning. This study's purpose was to evaluate the usefulness of two microbiological indicators (mutans streptococci [MS] and lactobacilli [LB] levels), singly and in combination, for predicting early childhood caries (ECC) and their contributions in multifactorial modeling.

METHODS:

A total of 1,782 randomly selected three- to five-year-olds were recruited and underwent oral examination and microbiological tests using commercially available diagnostic kits. A questionnaire was completed by their parents. After 12 months, the caries increment in 1,576 (∼88 percent) children was assessed.

RESULTS:

Caries risk increased with the MS and LB levels but plateaued above the LB level of 10(5) CFU/ml saliva. MS, LB, and combined MS+LB models predicted one-year caries increment (Δdmft>0) with a sensitivity/specificity of 79 percent/67 percent, 51 percent/89 percent, and 66 percent/85 percent, respectively. Sensitivity/specificity reached 80 percent/80 percent when baseline caries experience ("past caries") was added to the MS+LB model and up to 85 percent/80 percent and 81 percent/85 percent when psychosociobehavioral factors and oral hygiene status were added to the MS+LB model, without and with "past caries," respectively.

CONCLUSIONS:

The combined "mutans streptococci+lactobacilli+past caries" model is useful for identifying at-risk children. Incorporating MS and LB into a biopsychosociobehavioral model slightly improved the prediction, even without "past caries".

PMID:
25198002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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