“Good oral health is for life, not just for World Oral Health Day”

Since 2016, the FDI World Dental Federation and oral health product manufacturer Philips have been partnering to promote World Oral Health Day on 20 March. In this interview, Dental Tribune International (DTI) speaks to FDI President Dr Kathryn Kell and Philips CEO of Business Group Health and Wellness Sinéad Kwant about the significance of this day, challenges in improving oral health globally and how the collaboration between the two organisations can help.

DTI: In your opinion, is oral health improving globally? Dr Kathryn Kell: The global burden of oral disease remains significant and widespread; most people will be affected in their lifetimes. The message that good oral health is an essential part of overall health and quality of life is still not fully embraced everywhere, and individuals across the globe continue to suffer from poor oral health. Oral health promotion, as well as prevention and control of oral disease, is key to ensure that people around the world are prioritising their oral health. As the authoritative voice of dentistry, it is our responsibility to step up to the challenges and drive the fight against oral disease to ensure that we are fulfilling our vision of leading the world to optimal oral health. Sinéad Kwant: While there is a growing trend for people to integrate technology into their lifestyles to improve their health and well-being, such as using apps to track diet and fitness or oral health goals, there remain larger global issues that impact oral health. While people in the developed world live longer, increasingly sedentary lifestyles have led to a surge in chronic diseases, including obesity and diabetes. These in turn have significant implications for oral health. With almost four billion people worldwide affected by oral disease, it is our job to raise awareness of and educate people on the link between oral health and overall health and encourage them to develop healthy habits that last a lifetime. In your opinion, what are the main risks or barriers to people not focusing on their oral health? Kell: Oral health is affected by a wide range of social determinants that can impact access to care. Lack of oral health education, however, remains a main barrier to people maintaining good oral health. Therefore, we work hard to raise awareness of the importance of oral health and educate people on the intrinsic link between oral health and general health. We advocate preventative care, early detection and treatment to encourage people to adopt good oral hygiene habits and follow the advice of oral health professionals so that they understand the impact of oral disease on their overall health and well-being. Kwant: One of the main barriers to people focusing on their oral health is education and awareness about the importance of good oral health habits and the impact on overall health. Another reason is that many people do not visit their dentist or hygienist regularly and discuss their oral health. They go when there is something wrong, rather than practising preventative care. Working with the FDI, we hope to raise awareness of the importance of building good oral health care routines and encourage people to visit their dental professional and, importantly, to follow his or her advice and maintain good routines between visits. What do you hope your World Oral Health Day campaign will achieve? Kell: This World Oral Health Day, we hope that people will embrace the campaign theme of “Say ahh: Think mouth, think health”. We want people to make the connection between their oral health and their general health and recognise the close association between the two and the impact that one has on the other. We encourage people everywhere to commit to prevention and control their risk factors; oral health professionals to commit to educating their patients on the positive impact of protecting their oral health on general health; and policymakers to understand their countries’ oral health challenges and launch policies that address oral disease at a local, national and regional level. Kwant: This World Oral Health Day, we want to highlight how a healthy mouth is critical in preventing oral disease, as well as raising awareness of the link between oral and overall health. If we can get people to make small behavioural changes, these can go a long way towards positively impacting oral health, for example, their diet and brushing their teeth twice a day for 2 minutes. Tell us about the FDI and Philips partnership and why it’s important? Kell: Philips is a key ally in helping us ensure the success of World Oral Health Day. As leaders in the corporate world, companies like Philips have access to an international community of diverse stakeholders and—by working together—we can disseminate oral health messages to many more people globally. We have seen through their World Oral Health Day activation efforts that Philips is fully committed to improving oral health habits through meaningful innovation. We find this type of support instrumental in helping us improve people’s oral health across borders. Kwant: We know that good oral health can have important associated benefits when it comes to overall health and wellness. Working with the FDI, we have the opportunity to help people better understand their oral health, from the foods they eat to their daily brushing routine, and share knowledge and best practice. What is next for the future of oral health care? Kell: Prevention is key. We must shift our attention from a traditional restorative approach to one that emphasises disease prevention and oral health promotion. Oral health professionals need to play a key role in educating patients on the wider implications of protecting their oral health. A more integrated approach to health care can help achieve better outcomes for patients with oral disease. Kwant: We believe that we will see a move to more preventative care owing to the rise of digitally connected technology. This also has the possibility of transforming the relationship between the patient and dental professional by introducing the ability to share brushing results or work towards goals. This will change the way dental professionals communicate with their patients and hopefully improve patient compliance between visits. How does your partnership with dental professionals help to improve oral health globally? Kell: Dental professionals are the principal providers of oral disease prevention and treatment and play an indispensable role in working to improve oral health around the world. They must take every opportunity to serve as global ambassadors for oral health and encourage patients to live healthy lifestyles in their daily practice. Education leads to action and action fuels change. It is up to our profession to step up to the challenges and take action against the burden of oral disease. Kwant: Dental professionals are key to improving oral health. By partnering with the FDI, we have the opportunity to team up and raise awareness of the state of people’s oral health. It is our job to understand the barriers dental professionals face when it comes to making sound recommendations and to provide solutions that help them to engage their patients on good oral health. What is the impact of oral health on overall health? Kell: Oral health and general health have a close two-way relationship. The mouth is a mirror of the body and offers clues about the status of overall health. Many general health conditions increase the risk of oral disease and vice versa. Oral disease can impact every aspect of life, including personal relationships and self-confidence, school and job performance, and even enjoying food. Maintaining a healthy mouth contributes to a lifetime of well-being and helps people live a better quality of life into old age. Kwant: We are continuing to explore the link between oral health and systemic health, but we know that it has an important effect on overall health and wellness. A well-documented example of this is the link between diabetes and oral health. Diabetes affects hundreds of millions of people worldwide, and the difference good oral health care can make to the overall health of those with the condition can be significant. Taking care of one’s mouth can have an important longer-term influence on overall health and wellness. If you could give one tip or piece of advice about oral health, what would it be? Kell: It is never too early or too late to start looking after your mouth; your body will thank you! Adopting good oral hygiene habits, having a healthy diet that is low in sugar, quitting tobacco use, keeping away from excessive alcohol consumption, and having regular dental check-ups help protect the mouth and body at all ages. Kwant: I would recommend visiting the dental professional, especially from a young age. I would like to encourage people to visit their dental professional or hygienist regularly and to follow his or her advice. The two most common types of oral disease, tooth decay and periodontal disease, are completely preventable with an effective oral care routine, brushing for 2 minutes twice a day. It is important to remember that good oral health is for life, not just for World Oral Health Day, and developing these habits from an early age can positively impact on longer term health and wellness. Thank you both for the interview.

Younger patients benefit from bioactive dental fillings, dentists find

BOSTON, U.S.: The results of the use of ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE, the bioactive dental filling material developed by Pulpdent, have been published in a recent peer-reviewed white paper. The article provides recommendations on the use of the material and summarizes clinical observations of 2,703 dental fillings in children and teenagers over a 46-month period.

The white paper outlines protocols for the use of ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE as a filling material in primary and permanent dentition and recommends best practices based on the authors’ experience. These guidelines are followed by four pages of clinical images, including before and after photographs of 12 patients, ranging in age from 8 to 17 years. The images represent a broad range of applications for ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE, from rebuilding broken anterior teeth to filling cavities in molars. After nearly four years, the results of the 2,703 ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE dental fillings are promising, with no reports of postoperative sensitivity from patients or their families. Furthermore, the authors observed that the fillings had a conspicuous absence of marginal stain, unlike some composites, where staining can occur at the interface of the filling and the tooth. The authors have found that ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE overcomes the deficiencies of resin-modified glass ionomer cements, which can erode and wear down over time. Both the authors’ clinical experience and research indicate that ACTIVA BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE resists fracture and wear, meaning that fillings of this material are less likely to chip and break off. The white paper, titled “ACTIVA™ BioACTIVE-RESTORATIVE™ material in children and teens: Examples and 46-month observations,” was published online in Inside Dentistry through the AEGIS Dental Network. It was written by Drs. Theodore Croll, affiliate professor at the University of Washington School of Dentistry in the U.S., and Nathaniel Lawson, assistant professor and Division Director of Biomaterials at the University of Alabama School of Dentistry in the U.S.

Tags: benefit, bioactive, dental, dentists, fillings, patients, younger

EXPODENTAL 2018 focuses on innovative training and education offering

MADRID, Spain: As in previous years, the 2018 EXPODENTAL international dental equipment, supplies and services show is dedicating a special section of the event to the training of dental professionals. The training area and the training forum, dealing with specific issues, have been set up for the academic development of congress attendees. The event, which is being held from 15 to 17 March at Feria de Madrid, also features 333 exhibitors, representing 376 companies and 813 brands, and will bring value-added information of interest to current and aspiring dental professionals.

Training area The training area is providing qualified information on academic courses, through the participation of universities, professional training centres, scientific societies, professional associations and companies. Here, they are presenting their various educational offerings regarding undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, specialisation, continuing education, and business training and practice management courses. Training forum The programme of the training forum started today with a series of sessions for students. These include “The importance of hands-on training in dental education”, presented by Dr Vicente Antonino Daviu and organised by the Instituto Valenciano De Implantologia Inmediata [Valencia institute of immediate implantology]; a talk by Drs Estefanía Moreno Sinovas and Miguel Ángel Martín Fernández on the DIP international programme regarding dentistry outside Spain, organised by the Colegio Oficial de Odontólogos y Estomatólogos de la Primera Región [Spanish college of dentists]; and “The jobs most in demand in the future”, organised by El Centro de Formación Folguera Vicent [Folguera Vicent training centre] and presented by Drs Sofía Folguera Ferrairó and Fernando Folguera Arbas. Also focused on students was Straumann’s Young Professional Program, a package of services for new dental professionals. Furthermore, the Federación Española de Estudiantes de Odontología [Spanish federation of dental students] is holding a round table discussion on the various career options for young dentists. Both of these areas at EXPODENTAL are offering training focused on continuing education and improvement of knowledge related to technological advances in new products, techniques and treatments in the field of oral health, as well as guidance to fourth- and fifth-year dentistry students. Future dental hygienists and dental technicians, who were able to visit EXPODENTAL on Student Day—on March 15—had the opportunity to learn first hand about industry news and attend special presentations at the training forum. For dental professionals, CEODONT organised a lecture by Dr José A. Rabago Vega titled “The importance of mock-ups in dental aesthetics”, which analysed the different parameters of fabricating the mock-up and its alternative uses, such as a design for an aesthetic surgical guide, a provisional and a visualisation of the final aesthetic result. Vega will address the issue of porcelain veneers 30 years later in a talk on 17 March that will show several years of clinical cases to demonstrate the duration of this type of reconstruction. In addition, CEODONT has organised a paper titled “Tooth reconstruction after endodontic therapy”, which is to be presented on 16 March by Dr Juan Manuel Liñares Sixto, who will examine the issues that determine the different types of reconstruction, limiting damage and offering the best form of survival for the teeth. Completing the topics of the training forum will be a talk titled “New 3D technologies applied in the dental industry: Mandibular advancement devices for sleep apnoea” by Tessa Llimargas of Ortoteam and dental business strategy presentations by Plan Synergia titled “Are you worried about having more new patients? You should not” and “Four practical tips to improve results in clinic by the next week”, both presented by Dr Alberto Manzano. Official sponsor Canon, a world leader in imaging solutions, is the official sponsor of the training forum, where the company is giving talks on dental photography. In addition, it has an area in which attendees can test its advanced image equipment, which facilitate diagnosis, the precise monitoring of the progress of treatments and proper documenting of clinical cases (Booth #3A53).

Tags: 2018, education, Expodental, focus, innovative, offering, training

Dentsply Sirona hosts event in Berlin

BERLIN, Germany: In the beautiful city of Berlin, Dental Tribune International was invited on Wednesday 14 March to an event at the Digital Dentistry Academy, where representatives had the opportunity to experience Dentsply Sirona’s digital dental workflow. With presentations by top Dentsply Sirona management and hands-on workshops within the high-tech facilities of the academy, the welcoming and highly informative event was well planned and executed.

Focusing on either a chairside workflow or clinic-to-laboratory workflow, the full-day event covered a range of Dentsply Sirona products. Each workflow has its own distinct advantages, and ultimately, the choice depends on the particular benefits that users, whether dentists or laboratories, see as more advantageous. With the ability to visualise a patient’s anatomical structures being essential for ensuring the best outcome of any procedure, the Orthophos and Galileos 3-D radiographic devices provide high-quality images at the lowest radiation dose possible. In place of taking a physical impression, intra-oral scanning with Dentsply Sirona’s CEREC Omnicam scanner yields information about the patient’s dentition and soft tissue. When the CBCT and intra-oral scans are used in conjunction for case planning, the position of the implant can then be based on a restoratively driven crown-down approach for optimal function and aesthetics. At the surgery stage, a drilling guide can be produced chairside by the CEREC system (CEREC Guide 2) or by ordering a patient-specific surgical guide from SICAT directly via the Galileos Implant software. At SICAT, the implant case is checked and a high-quality guide is then produced. Another clinic-to-laboratory possibility is ordering a patient-specific Simplant guide through mySimplant Planning Service. With these options, dentists can choose the surgical guide depending on the surgical technique being applied. After drilling, the chairside workflow enables the clinician to design a restoration in-house. This is then milled in the CEREC MC XL milling unit and sintered and glazed using the CEREC SpeedFire. The CEREC MC XL enables the placing of customised abutments or screw-retained crowns in a single visit. In the clinic-to-laboratory workflow, the digital file from the intra-oral scan is sent to a dental laboratory via Sirona Connect. Alternatively, the order can be initiated automatically in Atlantis WebOrder, also via Sirona Connect. The design of the patient-specific abutment is then created and can be viewed and edited by the dental technician before final approval. Dentsply Sirona believes that a digital workflow, be it chairside or clinic-to-laboratory, improves the predictability of a treatment by helping to reveal all possible variables, as well as the precision of placing the implant and the efficiency of the overall process. The company also stated that the digital workflow helps patients to be more active participants in their own treatment. The company announced that additional news and future developments, with a range of products, will be released at the Dentsply Sirona World 2018 meeting in Orlando in Florida in the US from 13 to 15 September. Dental professionals can find more information about and register for the event here. [gallery ids="185595,185594,185593,185591,185590,185588,185586,185583,185581,185579,185577,185576,185574,185572,185569,185568,185566,185563,185562"]

Tags: Berlin, digital dentistry, workshop

Study shows some toothpastes do not protect against erosion and hypersensitivity

BERNE, Switzerland: Over the years, more and more toothpastes have been released on to the market claiming to aid with one thing or another—with a particular focus on dentine hypersensitivity and dental erosion. However, in a new study, researchers have shown that, out of nine analysed toothpastes, none were capable of mitigating enamel surface loss, a key factor in tooth erosion and dentine hypersensitivity.

Conducted at the University of Bern in Switzerland with the participation of a researcher supported by a scholarship from the São Paulo Research Foundation, the researchers tested eight toothpastes claiming to be anti-erosive and/or desensitising and one control toothpaste, all of which are available from pharmacies in Brazil and Europe. “Research has shown that dentine must be exposed with open tubules in order for there to be hypersensitivity, and erosion is one of the causes of dentine exposure. This is why, in our study, we analysed toothpastes that claim to be anti-erosive and/or desensitising,” said lead author of the study Dr Samira Helena João-Souza, a PhD student at the Department of Restorative Dentistry at the University of São Paulo’s School of Dentistry in Brazil. To simulate the effect on tooth enamel of brushing once a day with exposure to an acid solution for five consecutive days, the study used human premolars donated for scientific research purposes, artificial saliva and an automatic brushing machine. The physical analysis consisted of weighing the abrasive particles contained in the toothpastes, measuring their size and testing the ease with which the toothpaste mixed with artificial saliva could be spread on the tooth surface. According to the results, all of the analysed toothpastes caused progressive tooth surface loss in the five-day period. “None of them was better than the others. Indication will depend on each case. The test showed that some [toothpastes] caused less surface loss than others, but they all resembled the control toothpaste [for] this criterion. Statistically, they were all similar, although numerically, there were differences,” said co-author of the article and João-Souza’s doctoral supervisor, Dr Ana Cecília Corrêa Aranha. The authors of the study emphasised that these toothpastes perform a function, but that they should be used as a complement and not as a full treatment. According to João-Souza, at least three factors are required for a comprehensive approach: treatment prescribed by a dentist, use of an appropriate toothpaste and a change in lifestyle. “Dental erosion is multifactorial. It has to do with brushing, and above all, with diet. Food and drink are increasingly acidic as a result of industrial processing,” she said. “We’re now working on other studies relating to dentine in order to think about possibilities, given that none of these toothpastes was found capable of preventing dental erosion or dentine hypersensitivity, which is a cause of concern,” said Aranha. The study, titled “Chemical and physical factors of desensitizing and/or anti-erosive toothpastes associated with lower erosive tooth wear” was published on 20 December 2017 in the Scientific Reports journal.

Tags: erosion, hypersensitivity, toothpaste

Endodontic expert to discuss ideal isolation in free webinar

LOS ANGELES, U.S.: As the ability to replace teeth with implants becomes more and more efficient and accurate, the importance of endodontics can sometimes be overlooked. Endodontic specialists believe that if one cannot isolate one cannot treat—however Webinar host Dr. John Munce says that nearly any tooth, regardless of circumstance, can be isolated. In a free webinar on Friday, March 16, an expert endodontist will be demonstrating methods to achieve ideal isolation in extreme circumstances.

According to Munce, the heavy marketing and ever-increasing popularity of dental implants challenges the rationale for complex endodontic procedures. The inability to isolate is frequently cited as the reason for extracting teeth that might otherwise be treatable. Using high-magnification clinical videos, the webinar will cover a variety of off-label methods using common dental devices, materials and instruments in unusual ways to isolate teeth under the most challenging of situations. Webinar host Dr. John Munce is a diplomate of the American Board of Endodontics and a Professor of Graduate Endodontics at both Loma Linda University and the University of Southern California in the U.S. He received both his dental degree and his training in endodontics from Loma Linda University. He is a frequent international lecturer and the primary author of the chapter “Preparation for endodontic treatment” in the 50th anniversary seventh edition of Ingle’s Endodontics. The 1-hour webinar, titled “Overcoming extreme endo-restorative isolation challenges using off-label methods and materials,” will be broadcast live on Friday, March 16, at 4 p.m. EST. Attendance is free of charge after easy registration on the website. Participants will be able to ask questions via a chat window and have the opportunity to earn a continuing education credit by completing a multiple-choice questionnaire on the topic. Dental professionals who are interested in attending the course may register online here.

Google unveils new cloud-based health care application

LAS VEGAS, U.S.: As more technical areas of dentistry become digitalized, so too is the way in which patient data is used. Looking to address some of the interoperability challenges of health care data, Google has unveiled its new Cloud Healthcare application programming interface (API) at the 2018 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society annual conference and exhibition, held from March 5 to 9. The API enables clients to capture and manage multiple types of medical data on one platform.

Data analyst company GlobalData believes the new API provides a scalable infrastructure solution and lets customers use data for analytics and machine learning on the cloud. Designed to streamline digital transformations and improve health outcomes, the tool will reportedly provide health care organizations with faster access to analytics and other technologies. This can then be used to process information more effectively and efficiently than in an analog environment. According to digital industries analyst at GlobalData Amy Larsen DeCarlo, Google is already actively engaged with many industry organizations, but this tool may help incentivize health care organizations to undergo major digitalization projects that involve multiple data types, including DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine), HL7 (Health Level 7) and FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) standards. “With extensive experience in managing high volumes of data, the tech giant is well positioned to support health care clients dealing with vexing challenges associated with digitalization and interoperability,” said DeCarlo. However, despite Google making significant headway in the sector with an expanding customer list that includes Cleveland Clinic, Rush University Medical Center and the Chilean Health Ministry, in a highly fragmented sector such as health care, the success of any new program depends on how well it is designed and whether it is easy for health care organizations to use. “While Google is certainly well positioned to serve the health care organizations’ data management needs, it is bound to face some very well-resourced rivals including AWS, IBM and Microsoft that are also making significant inroads into the health care sector,” said DeCarlo.

Tags: data, google, healthcare

Microneedles may increase the effectiveness of topical anesthesia

LUBBOCK, Texas, U.S.: Fear of injections is not an uncommon condition, and when coupled with a fear of dentists, some people may avoid dental treatment until the absolute last minute. In new research, scientists from Brazil and the U.S. are testing a strategy to increase the effectiveness of topical anesthesia used in dentistry. Their hope is to reduce patient discomfort and ensure the anesthetic can reach further into the mucosa.

For their study, researchers from Texas Tech University (TTU) and the University of Campinas School of Dentistry of Piracicaba developed a small device that contains 57 microneedles. When this device is placed on the gingivae, cheek or any other location of the mouth to be anesthetized, it creates tiny holes through which anesthetic medications, like lidocaine, can penetrate deeper into regions of the oral mucosa. According to lead researcher Dr. Harvinder Singh Gill, Associate Professor and Whitacre Endowed Chair of Science and Engineering at TTU, conventional methods of topical anesthesia cannot completely assure protection for the patient. This is particularly true when a deep injection is needed to block a nerve. “That situation causes anxiety for patients and dentists alike, and could compromise the treatment outcome,” said Gill. Although to date the device has only been tested on ten patients, according to Gill, the outcomes have been positive. However, pain reduction of the injection is not the only area of interest. Other objectives of the study are to measure the pain caused by the 700 μm microneedles, as well as to determine the effectiveness of the system in expanding the area of the topical anesthesia. The research was funded by the São Paulo Research Foundation and carried out under the scope of its São Paulo Researchers in International Collaboration program.

Tags: anesthetiser, injections, micro needles

Research predicts growth of oral cancer treatment market

PUNE, India: According to the World Cancer Research Fund International, cancer of the oral cavity is one of the most common types of cancer worldwide, with thousands of newly diagnosed cases each year. A report recently published by data analyst company Market Research Future stated that the global oral cancer treatment market is expected to grow at an approximate compound annual rate of 7.1 per cent until 2023.

Increasing prevalence of oral cancer, rising per capita healthcare expenditure and growing awareness about oral disease are some of the major drivers during the forecast period. However, the risks of recurrence of cancer, even after treatment, and the related side-effects, as well as the high cost of treatment, are some of the restraints of market growth, according to the report. The report stated that the Americas will dominate the global oral cancer treatment market owing to a well-developed healthcare sector, rising per capita healthcare expenditure, a high prevalence of oral cancer in America, and developed economies, like the US and Canada. Moreover, the presence of global competitors, such as Bristol-Myers Squibb and Merck, within the regional boundaries will fuel market growth. Europe is the second-largest market for oral cancer treatment, followed by Asia Pacific. Availability of research funding, a very large patient population, a well-developed healthcare infrastructure and rising healthcare expenditure are expected to drive the market in Europe. Owing to developing economies, like India and China, Asia Pacific is the fastest-growing region for the market, the report pointed out. This, along with favourable government policies, a very large patient population and a developing health care sector, is expected to boost market growth within the region. Qilu Pharmaceutical, based in Jinan in China, was noted as the main competitor in the global oral cancer treatment market in the region. The Middle East and Africa region has the least share in the global oral cancer treatment market owing to poor economies and stringent government policies, especially in Africa. The majority of the market in the region is held by the Middle East owing to a well-developed healthcare sector and substantial healthcare expenditure by developed economies, like Saudi Arabia. In 2017, according to Oral Cancer Foundation data, it was estimated that 49,750 Americans would be diagnosed with oral oropharyngeal cancer that year and 9,750 consequent deaths would result, killing one patient every 24 hours. In 2014, there were 11,449 new cases of oral cancer reported and 2,386 estimated deaths within the same year, as stated by Cancer Research UK. Additionally, in 2015, according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, in the US, the total healthcare expenditure accounted for 17.8 per cent of the total gross domestic product, of US$3.2 trillion. The report, titled “Oral cancer treatment market research report—Global forecast till 2023”, is available for purchase on Market Research Future’s website.

Tags: cancer, growth, market, oral, predicts, research, treatment

Dentists lead research into faster detection of Zika virus

NEW YORK, U.S.: Early detection of any disease or virus is critical. The 2015 Zika outbreak in Brazil, which led the World Health Organization to declare Zika and its link to birth defects a public health emergency, is a prime example of this. Now, researchers at the New York University College of Dentistry (NYU Dentistry) are developing a novel test for the Zika virus that uses saliva to identify diagnostic markers of the virus in a fraction of the time of current commercial tests.

Working with the research company Rheonix, the scientists built upon their earlier collaborative work into the detection of HIV, for which they developed a rapid saliva test that can recognize both viral RNA and antibodies. “When we developed the HIV test, we knew we could use the same model for any infectious disease. All we need to know is the nucleic acid sequence and an antigen to identify specific antibodies,” said study author Dr. Daniel Malamud, Professor of Basic Science at NYU Dentistry. Testing for pathogens often involves two separate steps: one to detect a pathogen’s nucleic acids (RNA or DNA) and another to test for antibodies. Currently, the main way of testing for Zika is through real-time polymerase chain reaction tests, which can take around 3 hours—with specific antibody tests taking up to several weeks. Blood is usually used to test for the virus; however, the researchers believe that it may not be the best option, as the virus’s nucleic acids disappear in the blood a week or two after a person is infected, but can persist longer in saliva, semen and urine. In addition, antibodies can remain for months or years in those bodily fluids, which is why it is essential for diagnosis to also detect antibodies after infection. Funded by the National Institutes of Health, the NYU Dentistry researchers are now developing a test that combines both nucleic acid and antibody assays using saliva, given that the Zika virus’s nucleic acids and antibodies persist in this fluid. A saliva test is also noninvasive, cost-effective and easier to collect than blood or urine. According to the researchers, the new test has the potential to produce results in a matter of minutes. “The sooner you can identify a pathogen, the sooner steps can be taken to treat and isolate people. During an epidemic, you could test people before they get on a plane. The future of going through security at the airport may not be taking off your shoes, but instead spitting into a tube,” said Malamud. For the test, the researchers altered the model to detect Zika nucleic acid sequences instead of those for HIV. They then used a portable isothermal amplification device—which could be used for point-of-care testing—to identify Zika RNA. With evidence showing that both the nucleic acid and antibody tests work, the researchers can combine them in the Rheonix CARD cartridge, a fully integrated microfluidic device, to process both diagnostic assays automatically and simultaneously. The test is described in two studies, titled “Detection of Zika virus using reverse-transcription LAMP coupled with reverse dot blot analysis in saliva” and “Zika Virus Specific Diagnostic Epitope Discovery,” which were published in PLOS ONE and the Journal of Visualized Experiments on Feb. 5, 2018, and Dec. 12, 2017, respectively.

Tags: dentistry, saliva, Zika

Planmeca team up with manufacturer of mandibular advancement devices

HELSINKI, Finland: Known for its ease of use and accuracy, the Planmeca Emerald intra-oral scanner can now be used in the production of the mandibular advancement devices of Panthera Sleep, a division of Panthera Dental. Planmeca believes that partnering with the company, which is a world leader in the CAD/CAM field, will provide its customers with a more comprehensive range of solutions.

Situated in Quebec City in Canada, Panthera Sleep has been developing, manufacturing and marketing high-end mandibular advancement devices for the treatment of snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea for over 17 years. “We believe that intra-oral scanners simplify the workflow, saving handling and shipping time of the models. Simply attach the open standard STL files to the order, and our engineers will use the imported data to build the custom-made appliance. No compromise will be made on quality or precision, which represents huge benefits for doctors and their patients,” said President of Panthera Dental Gabriel Robichaud. After scanning the upper and lower arches, first alone and then in occlusion, the dentist can instantly export the scans to Panthera Sleep. From there, a specialist at Panthera verifies that the scan is complete and meets the requirements for the upper and lower arches with the bite at the maximum or desired protrusion. Once imported into the proprietary software, the design of the custom oral appliance can begin. When the design is finished, the file is transmitted to the printer for production. At completion of printing, the Panthera laboratory makes any final adjustments to the models and oversees quality control before shipping the appliance to the dentist. According to Panthera Sleep, the process is completed within 10 days. “We always want to ensure that doctors have the best possible orthodontic tools and systems to work with, and by cooperating with Panthera Sleep, the users of our brand-new intra-oral scanner can benefit from a smooth workflow when producing mandibular advancement devices,” said Ville Salonen, Product Manager for Orthodontic Applications at Planmeca .

Tags: device, scanner, teeth

COLTENE reports positive growth for 2017 financial year

ALTSTÄTTEN, Switzerland: A report released earlier this week by COLTENE for the 2017 financial year points to a positive fiscal year. It stated that the Swiss firm, an international leader in the development and production of dental equipment, widened its share and outgrew the underlying market. Most notably its EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) margin grew to above 15 per cent and its sales increased by 4.6 per cent.

According to the report, COLTENE’s sales rose in four major regions of the world—Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia—in both Swiss francs and in local currency. With a net profit increase of 10.4 per cent, the board of directors is reportedly set to propose a dividend of CHF3 per share at the annual general meeting, which will be held on 28 March. Last year also saw the company launch a number of new products, offer more training courses to improve customer relationships and expand its international sales teams. In 2001, COLTENE had acquired Swiss manufacturer DIATECH, which produces high-quality diamond burs for dental professionals, but not its US business. It acquired the South Carolina-based subsidiary in 2017 and this has helped bring greater cohesion to DIATECH’s brand profile—a move the company believes boosted its sales in rotary instruments to 14 per cent. In addition to overseas development, the expansion of its head office in Altstätten is currently underway. According to COLTENE, it hopes to improve efficiency and enhance its attraction as an employer. It has previously stated its strong commitment to Switzerland as its home base of innovation and production and to maintaining a well-trained and highly qualified workforce. The new facilities are intended to be ready at the end of 2018. Going forward into 2018, it has been reported that head management is looking to achieve further sales and EBIT margin growth over the medium term. The company highlighted that the reduction in corporate tax rates in the US could lower its tax bill by approximately CHF1 million as of 2018.  

Tags: business, dentistry, tax

Australian private health insurance mergers could negatively impact consumer

CANBERRA, Australia: For Australians, private health insurance is a privilege. Now, further market consolidation in the private health insurance industry, flowing on from the planned A$4 billion merger plan between HBF and HCF, may result in less value for money for current policyholders.

In response to the news of the consolidation between Western Australia’s largest not-for-profit health fund with its east coast counterpart, the Australian Dental Association (ADA) said the merger will not materially benefit the consumer regardless of whether or not market consolidation occurs from for-profit or not-for-profit insurers. “There is little evidence that consumers are getting adequate value for money when it comes to their private health insurance, yet taxpayers’ funds are underwriting the industry to the sum of A$6 billion per annum in the form of the private health insurance rebate,” said ADA President Dr Hugo Sachs. According to the health expenditure reports released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, even with the industry subsidy provided by the Australian government, individuals are paying more out of pocket for dental health each year, to the amount of almost 60 per cent annually. Additionally, the overall contribution by private health insurers to dental services has only increased from 14 to 18 per cent. In addition to paying more, the latest report by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) on private health insurers’ membership and benefits shows that, for the December 2017 quarter, benefits only paid for 46 per cent of the cost of policyholders’ dental treatment. The rest had to be paid out of pocket. According to the report, dental benefits, which represent around 53 per cent of all rebates paid under general treatment or “extras” policies, have only just returned to 2015 levels. Data from the APRA shows that the average rebate paid per dental service in 2015 was A$65. In 2016, it dropped by 3.1 per cent to A$63—however, according to the latest APRA report, this recently returned to A$65 per dental service.

Tags: Australia, health insurance, mergers

Children with tooth ache see pharmacist or emergency doctor rather than dentist

LONDON, UK: In England, dentists are often not the first person to see a child suffering from oral pain, a survey published in The BMJ has confirmed. Instead, the majority of parents in the country heavily rely on pharmacies and non-dental health services, like accident and emergency departments (A & Es), to help address their children’s emergency dental problems.

Conducted by researchers at the Institute of Dentistry at Queen Mary University of London, the study looked at data collected from over 900 pharmacies in and around London from November 2016 to January 2017. According to the results, two-thirds of parents had requested pain medications for their children owing to dental problems. Of those, only every third child with oral pain had seen a dentist before visiting the pharmacy, while almost every third had presented to a non-dental health professional, such as a general medical practitioner. Although many parents had sought help during weekends, when dental health services were not available, the figures show a clear underuse of dental services in the country, the researchers suggested. They said that the annual costs for the use of non-dental services amounted to £373,288, which translates to £2.3 million of preventable costs for the NHS when replicated to all pharmacies in England. “Children with oral pain need to see a dentist for a definitive diagnosis and to treat any tooth decay,” said lead researcher Dr Vanessa Muirhead, clinical senior lecturer at the Institute of Dentistry. “Not treating a decayed tooth can result in more pain, abscesses and possible damage to children’s permanent teeth.” “These children had not only failed to see a dentist before their pharmacy visit; they had seen GPs and a range of other health professionals outside dentistry. This inappropriate and overuse of multiple health services including A & E is costing the NHS a substantial amount of money at a time when reducing waste is a government priority,” she added. According to 2016 statistics, only 58 per cent of children in England and 49 per cent of children in London had visited a dentist that year, even though dental care is free for under-18s and national guidelines recommend dental visits at least every year for children. The study, titled “Children’s toothache is becoming everybody’s business: Where do parents go when their children have oral pain in London, England? A cross-sectional analysis”, was published in BMJ Open on 28 February 2018.

Wine polyphenols may prevent caries and periodontal disease

WASHINGTON, U.S.: Evidence suggests that sipping red wine has several health benefits for the body, possibly because of the beverage’s abundant and structurally diverse polyphenols and probiotic strains. Now, a study, published through the American Chemical Society, has reported that wine polyphenols might also be good for oral health by preventing the adhesion of bacteria that could cause periodontitis and other diseases.

Conventionally, some health benefits of polyphenols have been attributed to these compounds being antioxidants, meaning they likely protect the body from harm caused by free radicals. However, recent research indicates that polyphenols might also promote health by actively interacting with bacteria in the gut. Study author Dr. M. Victoria Moreno-Arribas, Director of the Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias de la Alimentación, Madrid, Spain, and her colleagues aimed to investigate whether wine and grape polyphenols would also protect teeth and gingivae, and how this could work on a molecular level. The Spanish researchers studied the effect of two red wine polyphenols, as well as commercially available grape seed and red wine extracts, on Porphyromonas gingivalis, Fusobacterium nucleatum and Streptococcus mutans bacteria, which are associated with dental caries and periodontal disease. Working with cells that model gingival tissue, they found that the two wine polyphenols—caffeic and p-coumaric acids—in isolation were generally better than the total wine extracts at reducing the bacteria’s ability to adhere to the cells. When combined with Streptococcus dentisani, which is believed to be an oral probiotic, the polyphenols had an even better anti-adhesive capacity. The researchers also showed that metabolites formed when digestion of the polyphenols begins in the mouth might be responsible for some of these effects. The study, titled “Inhibition of oral pathogens adhesion to human gingival fibroblasts by wine polyphenols alone and in combination with an oral probiotic,” was published online in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry on Feb. 21.

Tags: caries, disease, Periodontal, polyphenols, prevent, Wine

W&H acquires implant stability specialist Osstell

GOTHENBURG, Sweden: W&H, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of dental precision instruments and devices, has acquired medical technology company Osstell, known for its implant stability measurement and osseointegration monitoring products. The step is part of W&H’s strategy for surgical expansion, with the aim of broadening its competence and strengthening its position as a leader in the field of implantology.

Osstell’s technology helps dentists around the world to make dental implant treatments as safe and predictable as possible. By measuring the stability of implants objectively and non-invasively using ISQ (Implant Stability Quotient) technology, clinicians can improve patient confidence and comfort. Founded in 1999, Osstell developed the patented ISQ technology and its products are sold in more than 50 markets globally, with operations in Sweden and the US. “Osstell and W&H have cooperated very successfully in the past, so it is a natural step that Osstell now becomes a part of W&H. As such, we get the opportunity for stronger and broader global representation, as well as greater delivery capacity—always with the aim to serve our customers and users with even better products and services as well as helping them to provide best practice services to their customers—the patients. Patients’ well-being is always the top priority,” said OsstellOsstell CEO Jonas Ehinger. “The aim is to further expand our expertise and thus strengthen our position as a specialist in oral implantology. The specialised company with its structure fits perfectly to the character of a family business, which is why we are confident that Osstell is a good fit and will become a valuable member of our W&H family,” said W&H President and CEO Peter Malata. Currently, Osstell technology is available in a range of products, including in W&H’s latest generation Implantmed, an integrated solution that supports dental implant clinicians in their everyday practice. The ISQ measurements allow clinicians working with implants to make decisions based on reliable and objective stability values when determining the course of treatment for each patient.

Tags: business, dental, implantology

Ancient dental plaque could hold secrets from the past

WASHINGTON, U.S.: The use of tobacco has forever been etched in human history. Now, for the first time, researchers in the U.S. have shown that nicotine residue can be extracted from calculus on the teeth of tobacco users hundreds, if not thousands, of years later. The discovery provides new insights into the ancient world, while opening up many new possibilities for further research.

By using modern and highly sensitive instrumentation, such as liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, the scientists have found they can detect and characterize trace amounts of a wide variety of compounds, including proteins, bacterial DNA, starch grains and other plant fibers in dental calculus. This breathes new life into research, as dental calculus had been largely ignored by archaeologists in the past. “The ability to identify nicotine and other plant-based drugs in ancient dental plaque could help us answer longstanding questions about the consumption of intoxicants by ancient humans,” said co-author of the study Dr. Shannon Tushingham, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Washington State University (WSU). As part of the research, the scientists, from WSU and the University of California (UC), collaborated with members of the Ohlone tribe in San Francisco Bay to extract calculus from the teeth of eight individuals buried between 6,000 and 300 years ago. Samples were analyzed for nicotine, caffeine, atropine (a muscle relaxant) and other plant-based drugs. Among the analyzed samples, two tested positive for nicotine, demonstrating for the first time that the drug can survive in detectable amounts in ancient plaque. One test sample came from an older man who had been buried with his pipe; however, the researchers were surprised by the molar of an older woman testing positive for nicotine. “While we can’t make any broad conclusions with this single case, her age, sex, and use of tobacco is intriguing,” said lead author Prof. Jelmer Eerkens, an anthropologist at UC. “She was probably past child-bearing age, and likely a grandmother. This supports recent research suggesting that younger adult women in traditional societies avoid plant toxins like nicotine to protect infants from harmful biochemicals, but that older women can consume these intoxicants as needed or desired.” While the researchers did not detect evidence of any other plant-based drugs in this particular study, they believe dental calculus could be used to help trace the use and spread of other intoxicants. The study, titled “Dental calculus as a source of ancient alkaloids: Detection of nicotine by LC-MS in calculus samples from the Americas,” was published in the April 2018 issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports.

Tags: dental calculus, extraction, fossil, nicotine, plaque, Smoking

Previously lost fossilised human teeth produce new data

BURGOS, Spain: For the first time, scientists have been able to study the conserved original fossil remains of Peking Man. The six teeth belonging to Homo erectus were found in the mid-twentieth century at the Middle Pleistocene archaeological site of Zhoukoudian in Beijing in China, but were lost during shipping to the US in the 1930s. Declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, it has produced numerous human remains.

The Peking Man is one of the earliest and most emblematic hominins ever found. Since the loss of the remains, “for research on the fossil humans found at the site during the 1930s, plaster replicas of very poor quality have been used, as well as the descriptions and sketches that the researcher Franz Weidenreich left us,” said one of the study’s researchers Dr José María Bermúdez de Castro, coordinator of the Paleobiology of Hominins programme. According to the scientists from the Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana (CENIEH) in Burgos and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing, the study provides new original data, including the endo-structure of most Zhoukoudian H. erectus teeth preserved to date. The new evidence confirms the similarities of Zhoukoudian and other East Asian mid-Middle Pleistocene hominins such as Hexian and Yiyuan, allowing the definition of a dental pattern potentially characteristic of the population commonly referred to as classic H. erectus. The fossils were initially attributed by the Canadian anthropologist Davison Black to the species Sinanthropus pekinensis. Later, in the 1950s, these fossils were included in the species H. erectus. Co-author and -researcher Dr María Martinón-Torres, Director of the CENIEH, explained that it was long held that this species was a direct ancestor of modern humans and all the human fossils found in what the west call the Far East and in the current islands of Indonesia have been attributed systematically to H. erectus. The researchers now hope their recent work will lead the way to a definitive revision of all the human fossil material from the Far East.” The study, titled “The fossil teeth of the Peking Man”, was published on 1 February 2018 in the Nature journal.

Tags: China, fossils, teeth

Academy of Osseointegration to reflect on implant treatment health impacts

LOS ANGELES, U.S.: For the first time in its history, the Academy of Osseointegration (AO) will be hosting its annual meeting in Los Angeles. Shining the spotlight on all the customary components, as well as new and interactive features, the event is intended to offer a place where specialists, general practitioners, laboratory technicians and dental hygienists can share their knowledge across a global network. The main conference program will run from March 1 to 3, with pre-congress courses and workshops being offered on Feb. 28.

Being held under the theme “Inspiring imagination—Enhancing health,” the event will be a reflection on how dental implant treatment affects health care, while also looking into future treatment concepts and modalities. With globally distinguished speakers taking part in lively discussions, the event’s reputation for being a premier multidisciplinary nexus for implant dentistry will once again be highlighted, according to the organizers. In the afternoon session on the opening day, Dr. Harold Slavkin will be discussing personal health care and the future of implant dentistry, and Dr. Stephen Chen will shed light on socket wound-healing concepts. Following that, Dr. Matteo Chiapasco will share his tips on dealing with difficult maxillary sinus grafts. Finally, the prominent team of Drs. Markus Hürzeler and Otto Zuhr will wrap the afternoon up by looking at ideas, innovations and discoveries in implant dentistry over the years and determine which of these has stood the test of time. With such a wide range of speakers, workshops and learning opportunities all bringing into focus critical areas of dentistry, the organizers believe this conference is an essential event for dental professionals across all areas interested in learning the newest techniques, observing demonstrations of the latest technologies and engaging about current issues affecting implant dentistry. More information can be obtained here.
February 28, 2018
Open news on Dental Tribune

JUVORA showcases implant prostheses at AO meeting

LOS ANGELES, U.S.: With the 33rd annual meeting of the Academy of Osseointegration (AO) taking place in Los Angeles, attendees are eagerly awaiting the newest technologies to benefit implant dentistry. Among these is the JUVORA dental disc, a clinically proven nonmetal alternative for prosthetic frameworks that is made of PEEK-OPTIMA, a high-performance polymer. It was the first implantable PEEK and introduced by Invibio Biomaterial Solutions. For over 15 years, it has delivered convincing results as a biomaterial for surgical implants. PEEK has great flexibility and a bonelike modulus of elasticity, and exemplifies the AO meeting’s theme of “Inspiring imagination—Enhancing health.”

A proven success Though it is a new and innovative entrant to the field of implant dentistry, there is substantial scientific evidence to support the use of JUVORA-based prosthetic frameworks. This is in part because its base material, PEEK-OPTIMA, has been used successfully in the medical field for quite some time. “In a medical context, this PEEK polymer has been used in around 9 million devices for patients, so it’s already had quite a proliferous usage,” said Dr. Robert Lemke, Chairman of AO’s Research Submission Committee and a board-certified oral and maxillofacial surgeon from San Antonio. “It has been used for everything from cranioplasties to joint replacements and reconstructive surgeries.” Dr. Carlos Moura Guedes, Director of the MALO CLINIC in Lisbon, Portugal, is conducting an ongoing prospective study regarding the clinical applications of PEEK-based frameworks. He has successfully fitted patients with JUVORA prosthetic frameworks for full-arch rehabilitation, with promising results. “According to the data analysis performed in our study, the patients submitted to full-arch rehabilitation through the All-on-4 concept with JUVORA infrastructure and acrylic resin prostheses registered an implant cumulative survival rate of 100% and an average marginal bone loss of 0.37 mm after one year of follow-up,” said Guedes. “These results are very encouraging considering the short-term evaluation.” Emulating nature When a foreign material is introduced to replace a part of the human body, the ultimate goal is to have it function as naturally as possible. One of the benefits of using implantable PEEK, according to Guedes, is its high level of biocompatibility. “The improved resilience of PEEK, compared with titanium, induces a more physiologically natural behavior from a mechanical point of view, even when hard materials like ceramic are used for veneering the PEEK framework. As a restorative dentist, having the possibility of approaching natural dentition in implant rehabilitation is something that is extremely important,” he said. Though a material like titanium has commonly been used for prosthetic frameworks, its lack of flexibility and low level of shock absorption can ultimately lead to fracture and subsequent implant failure. With its bonelike modulus of elasticity, proven in vitro fracture resistance and impressive shock-absorbing qualities, JUVORA presents an alternative that allows for a lighter and more flexible prosthesis for the patient. “A JUVORA prosthetic framework not only works in a way that resembles natural teeth, it feels more like natural teeth,” said Dr. Miguel de Araújo Nobre, Director of the MALO CLINIC’s Research & Development and Oral Hygiene departments. Prioritizing patient comfort Given how integral dental prostheses can be for everyday life, special attention needs to be paid to their fit and function in a patient’s mouth. “The main benefit for the patient of a JUVORA prosthetic framework, besides the potential for longevity, is the comfort a more resilient restoration provides,” Guedes explained. “The lower rigidity of PEEK frameworks, compared with titanium, allows more normal function for patients, especially for those with parafunctional habits like bruxism. This can mean less maintenance of the prosthesis, and when there is natural opposing dentition, less wear of enamel and dentin of the natural teeth.” Nobre emphasized that, though JUVORA-based frameworks can be successful in the long term, principles of care management need to be followed to support this. “The patient needs to maintain proper oral hygiene self-care and periodic recall visits just like he or she would need to do if there were natural teeth,” he stated. “However, there is no extra care needed to maximize the likelihood of success of a JUVORA-based framework—just the standard of care that is necessary for the patient’s natural teeth or prosthetic restorations.” JUVORA at the AO meeting Invibio is exhibiting at the 2018 AO annual meeting, taking place at the Los Angeles Convention Center from Feb. 28 to March 3. The company is inviting dental professionals to visit Booth #146 to have their questions regarding JUVORA answered.

Tags: AO, implant, invibio, JUVORA, prosthetic
February 28, 2018
Open news on Dental Tribune
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