Thursday, February 18, 2010

In vitro analysis of human tooth pulp chamber temperature after low-intensity laser therapy at different power outputs

Laerers In Medical Science
February 11, 2010

Márcio de Alencar Mollo, Lucio Frigo, Giovani Marino Favero, Rodrigo Álvaro Brandão Lopes-Martins and Aldo Brugnera Junior

Published online: 11 February 2010

Abstract In vitro studies have provided conflicting evidence of temperature changes in the tooth pulp chamber after low-level laser irradiation of the tooth surface. The present study was an in vitro evaluation of temperature increases in the human tooth pulp chamber after diode laser irradiation (GaAlAs, λ = 808 nm) using different power densities. Twelve human teeth (three incisors, three canines, three premolars and three molars) were sectioned in the cervical third of the root and enlarged for the introduction of a thermocouple into the pulp chamber. The teeth were irradiated with 417 mW, 207 mW and 78 mW power outputs for 30 s on the vestibular surface approximately 2 mm from the cervical line of the crown. The highest average increase in temperature (5.6°C) was observed in incisors irradiated with 417 mW. None of the teeth (incisors, canines, premolars or molars) irradiated with 207 mW showed temperature increases higher than 5.5°C that could potentially be harmful to pulp tissue. Teeth irradiated with 78 mW showed lower temperature increases. The study showed that diode laser irradiation with a wavelength of 808 nm at 417 mW power output increased the pulp chamber temperature of certain groups of teeth, especially incisors and premolars, to critical threshold values for the dental pulp (5.5°C). Thus, this study serves as a warning to clinicians that “more” is not necessarily “better”.

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