Enamel caries initiation and progression following low fluence (energy) argon laser and fluoride treatment.J Clin Pediatr Dent 1995; 20(1):9-13JC
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of low fluence argon laser (AL) and acidulated phosphate fluoride (APF) treatment on caries initiation (CI) and progression (CP) in human enamel. Twenty caries-free molars were divided into tooth quarters. Tooth quarters from each specimen were assigned to one of four groups: 1) Control; 2) AL Only; 3) AL before APF; 4) APF before AL. AL was at 0.25 watts for 10 seconds (12.0 +/- 0.5 J/cm2). APF treatment was with a 1.23% gel for 4 minutes. Lesions were created in two treated, sound enamel windows per tooth quarter with an acidified gel. After CI and CP, sections were obtained and imbibed with water for polarized light study. Mean body of the lesion (BL) depths were determined and compared among groups (ANOVA & DMR). After CI, BL depths were: 189 +/- 29 micrometers for Control, 133 +/- 23 micrometers for AL only; 91 +/- 17 micrometers for AL before APF; and 83 +/- 14 micrometers for APF before AL. After CP, BL depths were: 321 +/- 43 micrometers for Control, 206 +/- 35 micrometers for AL only; 118 +/- 21 micrometers for AL before APF; and 114 +/- 19 micrometers for APF before AL. After CI and CP, argon laser irradiation alone resulted in significant reductions in lesion depth when compared with controls (p<0.05). APF treatment before or after argon laser exposure resulted in a significant reduction in lesion depth when compared with AL alone or control groups (p<0.05). Caries initiation and progression in vitro are affected to a significant extent when low fluence (energy) argon laser irradiation of sound enamel alone or in conjunction with APF treatment is done. This caries-protective effect occurs at an argon laser fluence (energy) that is capable of polymerizing visible light-cured resins.