The evaluation of a novel method comparing quantitative light-induced fluorescence (QLF) with spectrophotometry to assess
staining and bleaching of teeth
Clinical Oral Investigations
Faculty of Dentistry (ACTA)
This study reports the development and evaluation of a novel method using quantitative light-induced fluorescence (QLF), which
enables its use for quantifying and assessing whole tooth surface staining and tooth whitening. The method was compared with
a spectrophotometer to assess reliability. Two experimental phases, intrinsic stain formation and tooth whitening, were conducted
in vitro on 16 extracted bovine teeth. Intrinsic stains were developed via access through lingual surfaces and root canals
of these teeth using tea solution (2 g/100 ml, Marks and Spencer Extra Strong Tea, Marks and Spencer, London, UK) for 6 days.
Stains were removed using 33% hydrogen peroxide (VWR Prolab, Leicestershire, UK) in cycles over 150 min. Stain development/whitening
was monitored with QLF (Inspektor Research systems, Amsterdam, Netherlands) and spectrophotometry (Easy shade, Vita Zahnfabrik,
Bad Säckingen, Germany). Parameters Delta F for QLF and Delta E for the spectrophotometer were obtained. The progression of
stain intensity and removal observed by the methods were tested for correlation using Pearson's correlation coefficient. Intra-examiner
reliability for each method was tested. QLF showed a high correlation with spectrophotometry for detecting and monitoring
intrinsic tooth stain progression (Pearson coefficient r was −0.987 with correlation significant p < 0.0001). For stain
removal, the Pearson coefficient (r) between both methods was −0.906 with no significance p = 0.094. The use of an external
reference material in combination with the inner patch QLF analysis technique had the ability to detect and measure whole
tooth surface staining and its removal longitudinally. The reliability of the method shows a potential clinical application.
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