Caries I.D.: An Improved Method of Caries Detection?

Dr. C. asks:

cariesid.jpgI saw an advertisement in Dentistry Today about a new caries detection system called Caries ID, manufactured by Midwest and marketed by DENTSPLY. According to the advertisement the device, which looks like a high speed handpiece, is held over the tooth surface and a red light comes on if caries is present. It can be used for occlusal and proximal caries. Has anybody tried this and does it work? Is this any improvement over the DIAGNOdent made by KaVo? I am planning to use this primarily to detect occlusal caries. With all the adverse publicity about using a sharp explorer which may puncture an intact enamel surface over a carious lesion, I am looking for an alternative method of caries detection that is reliable.

Editor’s Note:

According to the company: “The Midwest Caries I.D. uses Light Emitting Diode (LED) and fiber optic technologies to accurately detect both occlusal and interproximal caries. The presence of either type of lesion is identifi ed by 2 signals: an audible tone, and a visual signal on the tooth. It requires only a clean tooth surface, free of plaque and calculus prior to use to be effective…Lightweight and cordless for reduced hand fatigue and improved clinician comfort. LED depth penetration of 3mm. Full mouth scan in under 2 minutes. Unit lifespan of over 100 patients. Autoclavable outer housing eliminates the risk of cross contamination.”

6 thoughts on “Caries I.D.: An Improved Method of Caries Detection?

  1. We just had this company do a lunch and learn after purchasing it. I am not to impressed.

    First off you can only use it on a virgin tooth, no sealants, no primary teeth, no anterior teeth, no lingual or buccal surfaces, and no brown stained areas.

    Second it comes with one probe and they are running a special that you get a second for free. So we have two probe tips available and in needs sterilized between patients. So there is really no practical use of it for all patients.

  2. sorry I forgot.
    There is a range of detection. A slow beep = a watch area. Medium = definite decay, and fast = needs treatment ASAP

  3. Jennifer, thank you very much for the info!!!

    I am not sure if I want to buy this device that cannot be used on brown stained area, no buccal or lingual surfaces, etc.

    Is Diagnodent from Kavo the same way?

  4. Hi, actually the product can be used on any posterior virgin tooth stucture. If there is an existing restoration on the mesial the other areas of tooth structure can be checked. As far as stained areas, if they are normal (not dark tobacco) this can read through. This reads the buccal and lingual surfaces both, just does so on from the occlusal surface. This product reads the actual enamel prisms so it needs to read the long axis of the tooth. The beeps indicate actual depth of damage. slow beep=0-1mm medium beep=1-2mm and rapid beep is 2+mm.

    Also, since this device is not being used in the presence of blood or does not cut hard tissue, this can be wiped down with Cavicide or Birex wipes so sterilization is not necessarily required between uses.

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