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Quintessence International
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Quintessence Int 24 (1993), No. 9     1. Sep. 1993
Quintessence Int 24 (1993), No. 9  (01.09.1993)

Page 669-676


Tooth discoloration and resolution following a luxation injury: Significance of blood pigment in dentin to laser Doppler flowmetry readings
Heithersay / Hirsch
Discoloration of teeth is common sequel of dental trauma and is often taken as a sign of irreversible pulpal degeneration, particularly if the vrown becomes gray or blue-gray in appearance. If a viable blood supply remains or revascularization occurs following trauma to teeth, removal of blood pigments by normal biologic processes can occur. The assessment of blood flow with laser Doppler flowmetry is an additional diagnostic aid following dental injuries. This technology has been used to monitor the clinical progress of two central incisors that had been palatally luxated in a sportinga ccident. Color changes were observed and were correlated with symptomatic and radiographic evaluation, sensibility tests, and laser Doppler readings. The results of these examinations indicated that the blood pigment within a discolored tooth crown interfered with laser light transmission. The limitation of this new technology in the assessment of teeth discolored following trauma is significant. Visual radiographic and symptomatic assessment remain as the principal diagnostic criteria at the present time.