Sunday, September 30, 2007
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Friday, September 28, 2007
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
ADA Gives Seal to Wrigley Sugar - Free Gum
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Filed at 10:49 a.m. ET
CHICAGO (AP) -- The nation's largest dentist group now says gum can be good for you, as long as it's sugar-free.
The American Dental Association said Tuesday it has awarded its seal of acceptance to Wrigley sugar-free gums Orbit, Extra and Eclipse --
based on studies funded at least partially by the maker of Wrigley
gums, Chicago-based Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co.
It's the first time the ADA has allowed its seal to appear on gum
after clearing it for thousands of other products since 1930.
The ADA said its independent review of the studies confirms those
three gums have been shown to help prevent cavities, reduce plaque
acid and strengthen teeth.
It said studies submitted by Wrigley showed that chewing those gum
products for 20 minutes three times a day after meals increases saliva production. Saliva, the ADA said, helps neutralize and wash away
plaque acid and bathes the teeth in minerals such as calcium,
phosphate and fluoride, which are known to strengthen tooth enamel and help prevent cavities.
Clifford Whall, director of the ADA seal of acceptance program, said its council on scientific affairs found the studies, which focused
solely on Wrigley products, had followed scientific principles.
''The council has looked at the body of data and concluded that there are some health benefits to chewing these products three times a day
for 20 minutes,'' he said.
Wrigley paid $36,000 to submit its evaluation material -- $12,000 per product. ADA also said Wrigley spends $35,000 to $45,000 in exhibit
booth space at its annual meeting, advertising in its publications and on other sponsorships. It also pays $25,000 to help sponsor an ADA
health screening program.
Consumer advocate Peter Lurie said the dental association should test other products before issuing such a seal, with the system appearing
to be biased in favor of large companies that can afford the clinical studies.
''As long as the testing process and the criteria for receipt of a
seal is unclear, the exact meaning of the ADA's seal will remain
obscure,'' said Lurie, deputy director of the Health Research Group at Public Citizen, the nonprofit consumer advocacy group founded by Ralph Nader.
Whall said the program exists solely to inform consumers and dentists about whether products do what their manufacturers say they do. The
seal currently appears on various toothpaste, dental floss and oral
On the Net:
American Dental Association: www.ada.org
Wrigley site on chewing gum benefits: www.gumisgood.com
Copyright 2007 The Associated Press
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
EVERETT, Wash. -- Cindi Reedes heard doctors tell her the same frightening words three times in eight days: Her teenage daughter's chances of survival were slim. It would take a near-miracle to save her from the aggressive infection ravaging her body.
The only cause doctors could guess at was the tongue piercing 18-year-old Lacey Filosa got without her mother knowing about it.
For weeks, Lacey wavered at the edge of death, kept in a drug-induced coma to give her struggling body every chance to heal. A tube kept her breathing. Operations to cut out the infection were needed nearly every day.
At her daughter's bedside, Reedes did everything a mother could to let Lacey know she was there. Doctors told her to talk to Lacey as if she were awake.
"My son and I would rub lotion on her feet," Reedes said. "I'd take her hand and say, 'We're here. Come on! Pull through this!'" Sometimes, in response, her daughter would squeeze her mother's hand.
No one can say with certainty what triggered the infection.
Doctors suspect it was linked to a tongue piercing Filosa had gotten in Everett, a type of piercing popular with young adults. Their theory: Bacteria commonly found in the mouth and saliva possibly entered Lacey's bloodstream through the hole punched through the girl's tongue. Once inside, they flourished, triggering a firestorm of infection.
"I kept looking for other causes, but could not find any," said Dr. James Erhardt, the Everett physician who first treated Lacey at Providence Everett Medical Center. "The only thing we could trace it to was the tongue piercing."
Reedes' phone rang about 7 o'clock on a Thursday evening, March 30, 2006. It was someone from Providence Everett Medical Center. "You need to get here as soon as you can," they told her.
Her daughter was at the emergency room. Doctors had already put a tube down her throat so she could breathe.
Reedes drove to Everett from her Camano Island home in 20 minutes. She was escorted to a treatment room, where she was shocked by what she saw. Her daughter's neck had swollen to "the size of a man's thigh."
All she could think was: "Oh my God, what happened?"
The pieces began to fall into place when she talked to another family member who also was at the hospital that night.
Lacey already had ear and belly button piercings. She'd been working on her mother to let her get one more a tongue ring.
Reedes was dead-set against it.
"I had heard horror stories," she said.
That night at the hospital, Lacey's mom learned that about two weeks earlier, her daughter had gone to a local shop and gotten her tongue pierced.
Lacey, who had graduated from Stanwood High School in 2005, had been living temporarily with a girlfriend, so her mom didn't know.
At the hospital, swelling in Lacey's throat was so bad it had blocked her airway. She stopped breathing on the way to get a CAT scan.
Erhardt, a specialist in head and neck surgery, was urgently paged to the emergency room to treat her.
The infection was spreading rapidly. She was going into septic shock, a dangerous blood infection. They gave her an emergency tracheotomy so she could breathe.
Then, she was rushed into the operating room where Erhardt cut into her neck and chest. All he could see was infection.
"Way far away in her chest there was pus pouring out everywhere," he said. Pockets of infection kept popping up.
At one point, Lacey had 16 tubes in her upper body to help drain away the infection. Tests showed the bacteria ravaging her body were types commonly found in the mouth.
Yet the extent of the infection and how quickly it spread, Erhardt said, was "the worst I've ever seen" in his 28-year career. "This was an unbelievably horrendous infection." It had the power to shut down all the girl's vital organs.
The surgery took about two hours. When it was finished, Reedes remembers being told: "You guys need a miracle for her to make it the next 12 to 24 hours."
It took a while for Lacey to work up the nerve to get the tongue piercing. "I didn't think I was going to be brave enough to do it," she said.
She worried it would hurt. But when they stuck the needle through her tongue, she said that she instead felt an adrenaline rush. "It wasn't bad at all," she said.
Lacey did have trouble eating with the barbell-shaped jewelry stuck through her tongue. But she didn't notice any other problems for about a week.
Then, she began to feel unusually tired, as if she was getting a cold or the flu. Her throat started hurting.
She made a dental appointment to recheck an abscessed tooth. X-rays were taken of her mouth. The dentist took one look at the results and said, "You need to get to the hospital right now."
Two friends drove her to the Everett hospital. She later was told that if she had arrived just 30 minutes later, she would have died.
Lacey filled out the paperwork to be treated at the hospital and remembers going through the double doors to the emergency room. A friend held her hand as they hooked an intravenous tube to her arm.
"Then they wheeled me to the CAT scan," she said. "That's when I stopped breathing."
For two days following her surgery, Lacey seemed to improve. She regained some of her color and even gestured to a nurse to ask her mom to bring her glasses. She wanted to watch TV.
On the third day, though, she took a turn for the worse. She was taken back into surgery to clean out more infection.
By the fourth day of her hospital stay, Monday, April 3, her blood count was dropping. Doctors performed yet another surgery. That evening, they put her into the drug-induced coma so her body would have a better chance of fighting the infection.
Erhardt, her surgeon, couldn't fathom what was happening. He would operate to drain her infection. But it would rebound back as strong as ever.
"We had her on the biggest-gun antibiotics and she still wasn't doing well," Erhardt said. "She kept forming abscesses." And her condition continued to worsen.
Finally, on a hunch and maybe even a sense of last-chance desperation, he called Virginia Mason Medical Center with a hypothesis.
Its hyperbaric chamber had been used to treat cases of flesh-eating bacteria. He wondered: Could its oxygen-saturated environment help Lacey's body smother this infection?
On Friday, April 7, she was taken by ambulance to the Seattle hospital. On Saturday morning, three doctors pulled Lacey's mom aside. For the third time, she was told that Lacey's chances for survival were slim.
For seven straight days, Lacey underwent the same grueling treatments: First she was wheeled into the hospital's hyperbaric chamber for 90 minutes of oxygen treatments. Then she was taken, on life support, to surgery, where doctors cut away some of her infection from her neck and chest.
Little by little, her mom saw improvements. Lacey would sometimes use her hands to signal to the nurses, asking for a piece of paper and a pen. Her breathing tube prevented her from speaking.
"I have about seven to eight pages of her notes and half of them I can't even make out," her mom said. But a few of Lacey's messages cut through the mental fog caused by her medications and treatments. "Where's my mom?" one asked. Another said simply "I love you."
There was no one point where she seemed to turn the corner, her mom said. One day, after three weeks in the intensive care unit, "she just snapped out of it."
One hospital worker told Lacey's mom that Virginia Mason had treated five people in the previous four weeks with similar types of out-of-control infections. Only two survived. Lacey was one of them.
Although Lacey's life was saved, the combination of the infection, surgeries and other treatments had ravaged her body. Slim even before her illness, she had shed 32 pounds, leaving just 110 pounds on her 5-foot-9 frame.
"It's like her muscles were just not there," her mom said. Physical therapists worked with her to help her regain balance. She learned to walk with a cane.
And after weeks of having a tube in her throat, she even needed help from a speech therapist to regain her ability to talk.
But Lacey had a goal, and in her mother's words, she was bound and determined to meet it: She would celebrate Mother's Day, on May 14, at home, not in the hospital.
"She was still weak when she came home, but she was alive," her mom said. "That's all that mattered."
The potent medications she was given and the seriousness of her illness erased most of Lacey's memories of her hospitalizations. She didn't really know the full extent of her problems or how close she was to death until she began flipping through her medical records. "She broke down," her mom said.
"I still do," Lacey said. "It's hard to look at it."
Lacey continued to recuperate at her mom's home, subject to what she jokingly calls "medical house arrest."
At first, she said, she wasn't allowed to leave. But then she paused, saying what was even harder to say: "I didn't want to leave."
Doctors and friends told her how lucky she was to be alive. She knew it and agreed. But once she was home, she battled bouts of depression and periodic anxiety attacks.
"I had really good people around me when I got out of the hospital to help me get my strength back and everything back to normal," Lacey said. "Like my mom. That's who I give my biggest thanks to."
When friends who hadn't been allowed into the hospital's intensive care unit finally were able to visit her at home, they would greet her with outstretched arms. "Don't hug me too hard," she would tell them. "It still hurts."
For weeks after she left the hospital, Lacey couldn't bring herself to look in a mirror. Her neck has two big scars, and another runs under her chin. There's a scar left by the breathing tube placed in her throat. A long scar starts under her bust and continues to her right shoulder blade. On her left side left is a scar healing over a bullet-like hole from where her chest tube had been inserted. People often ask if she's been in a car accident.
"No," she tells them. "I got my tongue pierced."
The bills for her medical care hit nearly $525,000, her mother said. Luckily, insurance paid all but $1,000.
In July, attorneys filed a lawsuit in Snohomish County Superior Court on Lacey's behalf. It alleges the Everett business where she got the tongue piercing was negligent. The business denies the charge.
No one knows how many times piercings have caused dangerous infections. That's one of the reasons Lacey's mom said she's urged her daughter to talk about what happened.
"She's so quiet and modest. I keep telling her you might save another family from going through the hell we went through."
Time heals. There's only a small dent left in her tongue from the piercing.
The barbell was given to a friend who helped drive her to the Everett hospital. He wore it as an earring for a while.
Her confidence has so increased that the young woman who once avoided looking in mirrors and didn't want her picture taken for a year after leaving the hospital has asked photographers to take model-like photos of her three times since July. "It makes me feel better about myself," she said.
Lacey celebrated her 20th birthday in August and now lives in Des Moines. She works part-time at a wholesale jewelry business and is going to a nearby technical school taking multimedia classes.
Her mom, who has since moved to a Chicago suburb, hopes that Lacey will someday turn her medical ordeal into a cause by speaking to parents, middle school and high school students.
They need to hear that a tongue piercing, what may seem like a decision made on a whim, can sometimes have life-threatening consequences.
"It's not something I want any other family to go through," she said. "As a mother, I relive it about every day: How could I get her through 18 years of life and all of a sudden they're telling me she could be gone in 12 to 24 hours?"
Monday, September 24, 2007
Source: Journal of Dentistry for Children, Volume 74, Number 2, August 2007 , pp. 85-92(8)
Publisher: American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of using a standard dental examination to detect methamphetamine use.
Methods: Data were collected from 31 patients in a hospital-based inpatient chemical dependency treatment unit using cross-sectional study design. Patients who reported current methamphetamine use were compared with patients who denied methamphetamine use on data from dental examinations and an in-depth substance use assessment.
Results: Evidence of a relationship between methamphetamine use and dental disease was not detected in this sample. Both groups had a high degree of behaviors and risk factors other than substance abuse that contributed to dental disease.
Conclusion: Based on these data, clients who used methamphetamine could not be distinguished from those who used other substances. Both groups presented significant dental disease, however, and it may be that most, if not all, patients in this hospital-based unit had significant chronic health problems including dental disease. Although adolescent use of methamphetamine is primarily restricted to older adolescents, consequences of use are severe and early identification of drug use may forestall some of the more severe consequences. (J Dent Child 2007;74:85-92)
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Affiliation: Faculty of Dentistry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
(Copyright © 2007, Canadian Dental Association)
Domestic violence (DV), now a national health concern, has pervasive effects at both the individual and societal levels. Women are the primary victims of DV; their lifetime prevalence has been reported to be 20%-53.8%. The sequelae of violence include increased acute and chronic health care utilization, psychological harm and a wide range of physical injuries. Head and neck injuries are the most common result of violence, and many women seek dental treatment following abuse. Dentists are in a unique position to identify abused victims and intervene. However, they are not well trained to identify victims of DV, and they lack appropriate resources to manage identified victims. Moreover, of the many health professionals surveyed, dentists feel the least responsible for intervening in cases of DV, and interventions by dentists are minimal. Barriers to screening for DV occur at the patient, provider and system levels, but they can be overcome with increased education. DV education, assessment and management should be a priority, so that dentists can help improve the lives of the many women faced with abuse.
Friday, September 21, 2007
Henry Schein’s Guru elevates key doctor-patient dialog from a passive experience to a proactive and flexible learning experience. Patients who understand their diagnoses and treatment options are more likely to make sound decisions regarding their oral health. Thus, Guru is interactive, providing customized explanations, specific notations, and images unique to each patient, from X-rays to intraoral photos. Developed with dentists for dentists, Guru's detailed animations can augment professional counsel in a universal language that may lead to acceptance of any doctor’s treatment recommendations.
“We are confident the Guru patient education software will provide our customers with a high quality product with unique educational and treatment planning segments providing advantages over competitive products,” said David McKinley, President of Henry Schein Practice Solutions. “The content is fresh, the communication approach is interactive and it delivers excellent value for every practice. In addition, with the release of DENTRIX G3 early next year, Guru will be integrated with the DENTRIX and Easy Dental practice management systems. Guru is a perfect fit in our mission to deliver more innovative solutions for our customers.”
Henry Schein Practice Solutions will launch Guru with a new advertising campaign entitled “How do you Guru?” that will appear in numerous dental publications. Dental professionals can learn more about Guru by calling 1-800-336-8749 and requesting a working demonstration copy at no charge, or by visiting www.dentrix.com. Guru is currently available in a stand-alone version for $2,499 with a $449 annual content enhancement plan that keeps the library fresh and up to date. Guru does provide limited integration with DENTRIX G2 and other practice management systems.
The website for Guru is at http://www.howdoyouguru.com
Discovering new treatments for sensitive teeth: the long path from biology to therapy
Journal of Oral Rehabilitation (OnlineEarly Articles).
Summary Tooth sensitivity is a common dental pain condition where sufferers experience brief episodes of sharp well-localized pain when their teeth are subjected innocuous stimuli such as cold, air-currents and probing with a metallic instrument. In this review, we will make no attempt to describe all the treatments that have been developed to treat tooth sensitivity. We will review the basic anatomic and physiological mechanisms responsible for sensitivity. The insights into the dental lesions responsible for tooth sensitivity, as well as the physiological processes linking stimuli and pain generation have suggested several treatments and preventive strategies. Unfortunately, many tooth sensitivity treatments fail to perform better than placebos in clinical trials that seek to assess the effect of agents on pain symptoms. In the case of the most commonly used self-applied desensitizing agent, potassium salts, the mechanism of action established by laboratory and animal models may not apply to clinical use. Thus results obtained with laboratory and animal models must be applied with care to clinical use. Clinical literature suggests that tooth sensitivity is the symptomatic manifestation of significant dental problems, such as wear and other forms of non-carious tooth structure loss. These conditions are increasing in frequency as people age, retaining their natural teeth longer. They are frequently the consequences of aggressive oral hygiene practices and diets rich in acids. Treatments directed at the underlying causes rather than the symptoms of tooth sensitivity would hinder the development of
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Public Dental Service, Gävleborg County Council. Centre for Research & Development Uppsala University/Gävleborg County Council. Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Family Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology Section, Uppsala University.
A hypertension screening project was performed jointly at a dental clinic and a primary health care centre. In this report the hypothesis that there is an association between high diastolic blood pressure and deep periodontal pockets was tested. A total of 1,239 consecutive patients aged 35-65 years had their blood pressure measured before the dental examination or had a known hypertension. Information on medicalhistory and tobacco use was obtained by interview and dental status was recorded. Fifty-four subjects had known hypertension and 141 had previously unknown diastolic blood pressure >90 mmHg (cases). For each case an age, sex and tobacco-use matched referent was chosen from those with diastolic blood presure < 90 mmHg. Significantly more cases than referents had periodontal pckets >5 millimeters deep.In multivariate analyses the prevalence of deep periodontal pockets was associated with blood pressure status also after adjustment for the small differences between the groups in age, sex, tobacco use and number of teeth. In conclusion there was an association between diastolic blood pressure and prevalent deep periodontal pockets. Whether the relationship is a causal one remains to be explored. Screening for high blood pressure at regulary visits at the dental clinic may give the dental care a new important role in the public health field.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
As part of the world’s longest-running study of the health effects of low levels of mercury exposure, Gene Watson, D.D.S, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Eastman Department of Dentistry at the University of Rochester Medical Center, will begin an almost $3 million, National Institutes of Health-funded study on prenatal exposure to mercury from dental amalgams or fillings. Watson will collect hair samples from children in the Indian Ocean island nation the Seychelles, who were enrolled in a study in 2001 to determine their exposure to methyl mercury from fish and other seafood. He will also record how many fillings the children have and how many and which surfaces of the teeth they cover as an indication of exposure to mercury vapor.
Because these children were enrolled prior to their birth, more information is available than any previous mercury/dental filling study. “This study can go back prenatally because we know what the mother’s dental history was prior to and during the pregnancy,” said Watson, who is also an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Medicine and the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology. “Little is known about detrimental effects of early exposure, and we need to examine this because studies suggest the developing brain is more susceptible to mercury than the adult brain.”
Earlier studies on postnatal mercury vapor from dental fillings showed no significant effect on children’s neurological function. While comprehensive, those studies did not examine whether children may have been exposed through their mother’s dental work while still in the womb.
“Comprehensive studies like these are impossible without cross-departmental collaboration. Dr. Watson’s work will add another important layer to understanding the impact of prenatal exposure to mercury that he and the Eastman Dental Center are uniquely able to provide,” said Cyril Meyerowitz, B.D.S, M.S., chair of the Eastman Department of Dentistry.
This study expands on knowledge gathered in the Seychelles on the neurological effects of methyl mercury by a group of researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center, including Philip W. Davidson, Ph.D., a senior investigator and professor of Pediatrics. The team has not found any ill effects of low level mercury exposure. Davidson said this new study is integral to further understanding the potential impact of all environmental exposures of methyl mercury.
“It’s the only study ever conceived where we’ll be able to look at exposure in the main ways people are exposed to mercury – fish and seafood, and dental amalgams” Davidson said. “No one has ever done this before.”
Mercury has been known to have detrimental effects on the nervous system for centuries; however, it wasn’t until an environmental disaster in Minamata, Japan, that the world began to take notice of prenatal methyl mercury poisoning. In the mid-1950s, heavy mercury pollution in Minamata Bay contaminated seafood the community ate as a major source of food. Thousands of people were poisoned to varying degrees, and many children born of mothers who were exposed to methyl mercury were also affected – even if their mothers didn’t show any obvious signs of poisoning themselves. The children’s symptoms ranged from speech delay to mental retardation.
During a series of poor harvests in Iraq in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Iraqi government bought cheap seed treated with a mercury-based fungicide to give to their people for farming. However, much of the seed arrived too late to be planted, so against orders not to eat it, the seed was ground and eaten. Thousands of people became ill. Much of the grain was dumped in ditches and beside rivers after it was pinpointed as the cause of the poisoning. From there, it entered the food chain again through poisoned fish and birds. As many as 20,000 people were poisoned and half of those died. The team at the University of Rochester Medical Center, including Gary Myers, M.D., a pediatric neurologist and a senior member of the team of researchers studying Seychelles, began its studies of mercury with this tragedy.
The two incidents together showed that levels of exposure that had little or no effect on a mother can seriously damage her fetus’s developing brain and they inspired the University of Rochester team to find the ideal population to study prenatal exposure to mercury. The team chose Seychelles for two main reasons – the fish consumed there have an average level of mercury and mothers eat 12 meals of fish each week (much higher than the average American). Since 1989, 779 children have been followed and no adverse effects on developmental outcomes were attributed to prenatal exposure to mercury in seafood. Studies on these and other children in Seychelles are ongoing.
Source: University of Rochester
Monday, September 17, 2007
Sprint (NYSE: S) customers in select areas of Denver and Indianapolis will now be able to enjoy enhanced wireless coverage and unlimited minutes in their homes with today's limited launch of the Sprint AIRAVE by Samsung in the two cities. The Sprint AIRAVE is the first commercially available femtocell, a compact base station that works with any Sprint phone and a broadband Internet connection to provide enhanced in-home wireless coverage plus unlimited calling.
"With the AIRAVE, Sprint is delivering an enhanced in-home coverage solution that's simple to access, low in cost and compatible with any Sprint phone," said Ajit Bhatia, director of product management for Sprint. "In addition, with unlimited in-home wireless calling, the AIRAVE makes it even more convenient for customers to rely on their Sprint phones at home."
With the Sprint AIRAVE by Samsung, Sprint customers can:
* Get enhanced coverage in their homes.
* Talk all they want while in their homes, without worrying about using their wireless minutes. Unlimited incoming and outgoing calls and nationwide long distance are included while using a Sprint phone at home.
* Take advantage of enhanced coverage and unlimited home calling without having to purchase a new phone. All Sprint phones are compatible with the AIRAVE.
* Reduce their monthly communication expenses. AIRAVE service is priced at just $15 per month for individuals and $30 per month for families, in addition to the customer's regular wireless voice plan.
* Easily install the device using their existing broadband Internet service and a power outlet.
* Have their calls automatically transferred back to the Nationwide Sprint PCS Network when they leave home.
Starting today, Sprint customers in select areas of Denver and Indianapolis will be able to purchase the AIRAVE at area Sprint stores for $49.99. Sprint plans to make the AIRAVE available later this year to customers in the remainder of Denver and Indianapolis, along with Nashville, and to customers nationwide in 2008.
For more information regarding the AIRAVE's availability in their area, customers should visit www.sprint.com/airave. There customers can enter their ZIP code to find out if they are in a limited launch area. Customers not in a limited launch area can then register on the site to receive notification when AIRAVE is available to them.
lax regulation of imported and domestic dental-restoration products.
Tallahassee, FL The National Association of Dental Laboratories the leading trade
group for the $5.5 billion U.S. dental-restoration products industry has formally asked the Food and Drug Administration to implement more stringent regulations governing the dental restorations affixed into the mouths of millions of Americans each year.Dental-restoration products the porcelain crowns, provisionals, dentures and bridges that American dental patients have permanently seated in their mouths are under-regulated,with few legal requirements for technicians to be certified and no mandates for dentists to document or disclose the source of dental work to patients, the association asserted in a Sept. 10 letter to the Presidential Interagency Working Group on Import Safety.
Although dentists prescribe the type of device they need for a dental patient, the product is actually manufactured by a dental technician employed by a dental laboratory, which could be located in the United States or anywhere in the world. Due to the growing number of Americans seeking dental restorative treatment and the growing pressure by dentists to cut costs and increase profit margins, much of the dental work Americans carry in their mouths is now imported from countries such as China, Pakistan, the Philippines and India.
Those products are not tested or inspected for sterilization, for the long-term safety or quality of their components, or for the precision of the fit as required for proper dental care. Even for products manufactured within the United States, most domestic dental laboratories are exempt from registering with the FDA, and most typically employ just 3.5 people.
To protect public confidence in the industry, the association asserted that the FDA must act to protect Americans and:
Promote certification of dental technicians employed at both domestic and foreign labs.
Require that dentists label and disclose to patients the source of dental devices, so all dental-restoration products can be traced back to the laboratory that made them.
Step up inspections of the content and quality of imported dental-restoration products.
Mandate that dental labs register with the FDA or with state health departments.
Require that dentists include the registration number of their contracting dental laboratory on a prescription that is kept in patients dental records; so that dental devices can be traced even long after they have been implanted in patients mouths.
Such common-sense regulations are critical because in many cases, the dental technician not the prescribing dentist makes the selection of dental materials that will be used for a particular patients restoration, said Bennett Napier, CAE co-executive director of the National Association of Dental Laboratories. Without having some requirement for the person or manufacturer creating the device to have the appropriate knowledge and training,the issue of material selection and/or safety is left to chance.
Many of the dental crowns and bridges imported into the United States are either porcelain fused to metal or metal-alloy devices. If manufactured incorrectly, these products could be contaminated with lead or other toxic heavy metals that could make patients sick.
If a problem occurs with a U.S. patient due to a dental restoration that contains a toxic material, chances are that the patient would report their health issue to a medical doctor and not their dentist to determine the root of the health problem, Napier said. It is unlikely that the problem would be immediately traced back to the dental device, as most patients are unaware of what materials are in their dental restoration and even less likely to know where it was manufactured.
Anecdotal evidence has pointed to contamination problems with products imported from
emerging markets such as China, but there is no comprehensive data about the scope of
the problem because there have been no large-scale inspections of such products.
The National Association of Dental Labs is a trade association with forty three affiliated state and regional commercial dental laboratory associations representing
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Carolina Ganss, Nadine Schlueter, Martin Hardt, Judith von Hinckeldey, Joachim Klimek (2007)
Effects of toothbrushing on eroded dentine
European Journal of Oral Sciences 115 (5), 390–396.
It is an established assumption that eroded dental hard tissues are particularly prone to toothbrush abrasion. Only a few studies have aimed to show this for dentine and, if so, disregarded the complex histological structure of this tissue. Therefore, the present study sought (i) to investigate the effects of toothbrushing on eroded dentine and (ii) to analyze how the organic matrix influences the outcome of established methods for quantifying dental hard tissue loss. The effects of brushing were investigated by optical (P-O) and mechanical (P-M) profilometry, by longitudinal microradiography (LMR), and by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The SEM images showed that a demineralized organic layer had developed, which was unaffected by brushing. For substance loss, there was no significant difference between eroded and eroded/abraded samples. Considerable differences occurred, however, when results from the different methods were compared. P-O yielded the lowest (7.0 ± 3.4 µm) and LMR the highest (109.8 ± 10.7 µm) substance loss values. When the organic material was removed enzymatically, all methods gave comparable results. The results of this study do not lend support to the notion that brushing increases substance loss of eroded dentine. Profilometry was not suitable for measuring mineral loss, unless the organic material was removed.
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Dental appointment no-shows: why do some parents fail to take their children to the dentist?
International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry (OnlineEarly Articles).
Background. Children are considerably dependent on their parents, not least in relation to achieving good oral health. There is a group of children who do not show up for dental treatments or only regular check-ups despite reminders from the dental health clinic. The cost of patients failing to come for scheduled appointments is also considered significant.
Aim. The aim of this study was to illuminate the main problem explaining why some parents fail to bring their children to the dental health clinics or to encourage and supervise them when they can take the responsibility themselves for dental treatments or only regular dental check-ups.
Design. In-depth interviews were carried out with 16 parents of children who regularly had failed to turn up for appointments at the dental health clinic. The verbatim transcribed interviews were analysed in line with the guidelines for grounded theory.
Results. A core category, ‘being overloaded in daily life’, emerged from the data and formed, together with three additional related categories, a conceptual model.
Conclusions. Our results indicate that these families experience an overload of demands related to their daily living and survival. Health-promoting efforts in the form of regular dental check-ups for their children have low priority for them.
Friday, September 14, 2007
IRVINE, CA--(Marketwire - September 13, 2007) - BIOLASE Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: BLTI), the world's leading dental laser company, announced today that it has been granted a new U.S. patent related to its oral care technologies for a teeth cleaning and whitening system using a toothbrush that emits electromagnetic energy combined with a dentifrice containing a photosensitive agent.
President and CEO Jeffrey W. Jones said that this new patent strengthens the Company's protection for a variety of innovative consumer products either under consideration or already in development.
"Our overall business strategy includes pursuing the development of consumer products based upon our core technologies and related intellectual property portfolio. This patent and others that are pending add to our already solid position for future product development in this category," Jones added.
The patent, No. 7,261,558, granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, contains both device and method claims related to a cleaning and whitening system for teeth, comprised of a toothbrush having a cleaning surface that incorporates a source of electromagnetic radiation (energy) that focuses energy toward the cleaning surface during brushing to enhance cleaning of the teeth and a dentifrice that disperses a photosensitive agent including a whitening compound. The patent contains 147 claims, of which seven are independent.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Are you looking for CE credits or want to offer CE credits to your staff. Consider the Dental Resource Center. The cost is a very reasonable $499. Just for annual OSHA training its worthwhile. More information is available in the video or go to the DRC web page.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
12:43 PM PDT on Monday, September 10, 2007
By LIZA JAVIER / KING5.com
DUVALL, Wash. - A Duvall woman who claimed she broke teeth while eating food from McDonald's in two separate incidents now faces first degree theft charges for filing fake injury claims.
Rebecca Ish filed a claim with McDonald's after she allegedly bought a cherry pie from a Duvall McDonald's and broke a tooth while biting into a cherry pit in July of 2004, according to court documents. McDonald's paid Ish over $6,300, the amount she said she paid for dental work to repair the damaged tooth.
Three months later, prosecutors say Ish filed a second claim against McDonald's, this time claiming she broke another tooth on a bone while eating a cheeseburger from another McDonald's restaurant.
After McDonald's insurance company launched an independent investigation into the matter, they found the dentist that Ish claimed did her dental work never did. They also discovered she was an employee of the dentist, which would have given her access to the billing documents.
King County prosecutors charged Ish with Theft in the First Degree for the insurance payment and False Claims for making it all up.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Monday, September 10, 2007
Omron is able to detect the smile factor of one or several people on a scale of 0% to 100%, here is an explanation from Omron Staff regarding this new software.
"The software measures' how much a subject is smiling and outputs a 'smile factor' on a scale of 0 to 100% 3D face mapping technology ensures accurate smile detection and measurement even if the subject is not looking directly at the camera, something which other technologies on the market have not always been able to do, and which opens up avenues for applications in mobile devices.
The software is capable of processing multiple faces at one time. Processing speed is less than a tenth of a second (0.044 seconds to be precise, using a Pentium 4 pc with. 3.2GHz processing speed). At 46Kb, the program is small enough to be embedded on an IC chip for mobile apps.
Applications we envisage are:
- Digital cameras (for taking pictures when the subject's smiling).
- (my personal favorite) a 'smile checker' (!!)for people working in the service industry.
- in human-robot communication interfaces
- new product testing by food manufacturers - as a means of checking, for example, whether low calorie alternatives give the same pleasure kicks as higher calorie originals etc."
Sunday, September 09, 2007
Journal of Aging and Health, Vol. 19, No. 5, 778-791 (2007)
Objectives: To quantify (a) the prevalence of dissatisfaction with dental appearance in a diverse sample of dentate adults and (b) the associations between dissatisfaction with dental appearance, sociodemographic factors, and other measures of oral health.
Methods: Data were taken from the Florida Dental Care Study , a population-based longitudinal cohort study of oral health and related behaviors. The sample included 873 participants at baseline. Descriptive analysis and logistic regression were conducted to analyze the baseline data in the current report.
Results: Females, problem-oriented dental attenders, and participants who had not completed high school were significantly more dissatisfied with their dental appearance than their respective counterparts. Dissatisfaction with dental appearance was also independently associated with six specific clinical and self-reported measures of oral health. Discussion: Dissatisfaction with dental appearance was common in this population-based sample of middle-aged and older adults, and was significantly associated with key sociodemographic and oral health factors.
Saturday, September 08, 2007
Well a new update came out last month. Version 3.5.3
So take a look in the about box and see if you need an update. The program is free for personal use and only $25 for commercial use.
Go get your Replicator update.
Friday, September 07, 2007
VersaLight® brings together suction, pushbutton-controlled irrigation, retraction, and light. Using existing OR light sources, unit produces uniform, cool, shadowless spot light that aids visualization in deep cavity surgery. Relief holes increase suction effectiveness and allow surgeons to wipe tissue dry while preventing tissue grab. Also included, cable management system features spiral wrap-arounds that keep multiple cables and tubing bundled together.
More info www.lumitexmd.com
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Researchers found that extracts from Hass avocados kill or stop the growth of pre-cancerous cells that lead to oral cancer. Hass avocados are year-round fruits known for their distinctive bumpy skin that turns from green to purplish-black as they ripen.
While there are more than 500 varieties of avocados grown worldwide, Hass avocados are the most readily available at supermarkets nationwide. Similar research has not been conducted on other varieties of avocados.
The findings are published online in the journal Seminars in Cancer Biology.
Read the whole article here
The AnterioRest® Support
The AnterioRest is a revolutionary approach to the prevention and treatment of lower back injury. The concept of Back Support From the Front® applies research findings which suggest that anterior support is far more effective than posterior support in reducing muscle stress in an inclined position.
The AnterioRest attaches to the back of the patient chair and terminates in a small cushion against which the practitioner leans, thus freeing arms and hands for stress free manipulation of instruments. The supporting arms can be moved through a full range of motion, accommodating all treatment positions for right or left handed users. The optional dual mount installation attaches two AnterioRests to the back of the patient chair providing support for both the dentist and assistant during four-handed procedures. The AnterioRest has been instrumental in alleviating back, neck, and extremity pain, helping many users return to comfortable living and productivity.
The device is available in a number of colors to match your office decor.
More information is available on the anteriorestdental web site.
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
A Message to Palm Customers, Partners and Developers
As many of you are aware, we are in the process of building our next generation software platform. We are very excited about how this is coming together. It has a modern flexible UI, instant performance, and an incredibly simple and elegant development environment. We are working hard on this platform and on the first smartphone that will take advantage of it.
In the course of the past several months, it has become clear that the right path for Palm is to offer a single, consistent user experience around this new platform design and a single focus for our platform development efforts. To that end, and after careful deliberation, I have decided to cancel the Foleo mobile companion product in its current configuration and focus all of our energies on delivering our next generation platform and the first smartphones that will bring this platform to market. We will, of course, continue to develop products in partnership with Microsoft on the Windows Mobile platform, but from our internal platform development perspective, we will focus on only one.
Because we were nearly at the point for shipping Foleo, this was a very tough decision. Yet I am convinced this is the right thing to do. Foleo is based on second platform and a separate development environment, and we need to focus our efforts on one platform. Our own evaluation and early market feedback were telling us that we still have a number of improvements to make Foleo a world-class product, and we can not afford to make those improvements on a platform that is not central to our core focus. That would not be right for our customers or for our developer community.
Jeff Hawkins and I still believe that the market category defined by Foleo has enormous potential. When we do Foleo II it will be based on our new platform, and we think it will deliver on the promise of this new category. We're not going to speculate now on timing for a next Foleo, we just know we need to get our core platform and smartphones done first.
I would like to thank our customers for their interest in Foleo. I know there will be disappointed folks who were looking forward to carrying a Foleo for all their mobile computing needs. I am certainly one of them. I would also like to thank the developers who have supported our Foleo efforts. They have been loyal to Palm and have worked hard to deliver some compelling solutions on the Foleo platform. I know that they will understand that the right thing to do for the long run is to focus on one platform that will live for years, rather than invest energy in a one-off solution. We will make every effort to make sure we bring our developers forward to our next generation platform.
This decision will require us to take a limited charge of less than $10 million dollars to our earnings. This is a lot of money, but it is a small price relative to the costs that would be required to support two platforms going forward. This decision is in the best interest of our customers, our team, our products and our shareholders. I hope this renewed focus at Palm will allow us to deliver more compelling solutions to our core smartphone market, and it will allow us to position ourselves for the long run around one Palm experience.
-Ed Colligan, CEO
More information is available on the web site
www.inchairtv.com or www.medpedmedia.com
Monday, September 03, 2007
Saturday, September 01, 2007
"Oral health is not a cosmetic issue -- it can be a matter of life and death, especially for seniors," said Jean Honny, president of the California Dental Hygienists' Association (CDHA), the professional organization representing the state's dental hygienists.
Honny pointed to recent media coverage of a 76-year-old woman who died earlier this year at a Northern California nursing home that state health officials said neglected the woman's dental hygiene. The patient developed an oral infection that lead directly to her death.
"Such tragedies can be avoided if the advocates, health care professionals and family members better understand the importance of oral health," she said. "September is Healthy Aging Month and a perfect time to promote sound oral health for our elderly population."
CDHA offered the following tips to make sure seniors receive the care they need:
-- Make sure the patient receives a full oral inspection during the intake process
-- Realize that even a senior with dentures needs dental care and check ups. Dentures must fit properly in order to prevent pain and the possibility of infection
-- Nursing home patients should have a minimum of one oral exam per year
-- Family members should investigate how their loved ones can conveniently be transported to a dental office if necessary
"There is a misconception that loss of teeth is inevitable and that dentures take all dental care issues off the table," said Honny. "But this couldn't be further from the truth because dentures can hide serious infections and early signs of cancer."
For the past year, CDHA has been raising public awareness about oral health and the role of dental hygienists, who are highly educated and must be licensed by the State of California. In addition to helping patients understand the connection between oral health care and overall health, dental hygienists educate patients about proper oral hygiene and treat periodontal disease to prevent the condition from advancing and complicating other diseases.
The California Dental Hygienists' Association (CDHA) is the authoritative voice of the state's dental hygiene profession. While registered dental hygienists have worked in the state for nearly a century, CDHA was established 20 years ago when two regional associations merged to form a unified professional group. CDHA represents thousands of dental hygienists throughout the state and is dedicated to expanding opportunities for the profession and access to care for all Californians.
Healthy Aging(R) Month is an annual observance month designed to focus national attention on the positive aspects of growing older. More information can be found at http://www.healthyaging.net.