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Electrical dental pulp testing. Defining parameters for proper instrumentation

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3 Author(s)
Daskalov, I. ; Centre of Biomed. Eng., Bulgarian Acad. of Sci., Sofia, Bulgaria ; Indjov, B. ; Mudrov, M.

The use of an electric pulp tester for quantitative measurement of the threshold excitation is justified only if its parameters meet the following specifications: rectangular stimulation pulse of 10 ms minimum duration; current-stabilized output with automatic increase of the intensity and peak current amplitude display; high output resistance of at least 500 M/spl Omega/; pulse repetition frequency of about 5 Hz at low intensities (up to 10-15 μA peak current intensity range 1 to 200-250 μA); active electrode contact area over 0.8 mm2 with application of electrolyte paste or use of conductive rubber tip; warning signal for limited current intensity; reference (return) electrode in the patient's hand or as a flat surface hook attached on the lip; both electrodes are sterilizable; pulp testers with intensity control and indication in arbitrary units, not calibrated in μA, are of poor diagnostic value and are not recommended. Devices with "yes" or "no" assessment of pulp excitability are also unacceptable. They do not use accurate current-stabilized generators and do not generate pulses with proper duration and shape.

Published in:

Engineering in Medicine and Biology Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:16 ,  Issue: 1 )