Physical, chemical, and histologic changes in dentin caries lesions of primary teeth induced by regular use of polyol chewing gums
Authors: Mäkinen, Kauko K.; Chiego, Daniel J.; Allen, Peter; Bennett, Christopher; Isotupa, Kauko P.; Tiekso, Jaakko; Mäkinen, Pirkko-Liisa
Source: Acta Odontologica Scandinavica, Volume 56, Number 3, 17 June 1998 , pp. 148-156(9)
Publisher: Informa Healthcare
Abstract:A previous clinical trial showed that long-term use of saliva-stimulating polyol (xylitol and sorbitol) chewing gums was associated with arrest of dental caries in young subjects. After a 20-22-month intervention (when the subjects were 8 years old), a total of 23 primary teeth with extensive dentin caries lesions whose surface in clinical examination was found to be totally rehardened (remineralized) could be removed because the teeth were near their physiologic exfoliation time. These teeth were subjected to histologic, microhardness, and electron microscopic tests. The majority of the specimens had been remineralized from the surface by a non-cellular-mediated process within the remaining collapsed, organic extracellular matrix associated with the remaining dentinal surface. Many of the underlying dentinal tubules were filled with a matrix that had been subsequently mineralized. Dental microanalyses showed that the topmost (outer) 20-m-thick rehardened layer of the lesions exhibited the highest Ca:P ratio, which leveled off at a depth of approximately 150 m. The rehardened surface layer (normally <0.1 mm in thickness) was significantly (P < 0.001) harder than sound dentin and nearly as hard as sound enamel. Although the main source of the mineral present in the rehardened layer was most likely of salivary origin, some extracellular remineralization was probably mediated by odontoblasts. The results complete the clinical diagnoses of the original trial and suggest that regular use of polyol chewing gums may induce changes in dentin caries lesions, which in histologic and physiochemical studies show typical characteristics of rehardening and mineralization.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: June 17, 1998