Laser Doppler flow measurements of pulpal blood flow and severity of dental injury

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To evaluate laser Doppler flowmetry (LDF) measurements of pulpal blood flow (PBF) and severity of dental injury.


The relationship between adverse outcomes and PBF measurements was analysed in 94 permanent maxillary incisors of 71 consecutive dental trauma patients. The diagnostic adverse outcome group was comprised of 72 incisors in 52 patients with a type I (loss of sensitivity), type II (loss of sensitivity and periapical radiolucency), or type III (loss of sensitivity, periapical radiolucency and grey discoloration of crown) diagnosis. The nonadverse outcome group consisted of 22 incisors in 19 patients with the finding of an absence of an adverse outcome. At each session, when an injured permanent maxillary incisor was recorded, a contralateral homologous tooth was used as a control. An ordinal stepwise regression was completed to assess the degree of association between PBF measurements and adverse outcomes


Using chi-square analysis for pairwise comparison, a significant relationship between PBF measurements and types of adverse outcomes (χ2 = 119.635, d.f. = 12, P = 0.000) was observed. PBF measurements that were significantly associated with more severe outcome were PBF levels of ≤3 perfusion units (PU) (119.1 odds ratio) (P = 0.000), and those of >3 PU and ≤6 PU (12.7 odds ratio) (P = 0.000).


PBF measurements were related to the severity of adverse outcomes. Further studies are required to evaluate whether PBF measurements can predict dental injuries that progress to adverse treatment outcomes.

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