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The International Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Implants



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Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 7 (1992), No. 4     1. Dec. 1992
Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants 7 (1992), No. 4  (01.12.1992)

Page 441-449

Effects of the Nd:YAG Dental Laser on Plasma-Sprayed and Hydroxyapatite-Coated Titanium Dental Implants: Surface Alteration and Attempted Sterilization
Block, Carl M. / Mayo, John A. / Evans, Gerald H.
The Nd:YAG dental laser has been recommended for a number of applications, including the decontamination or sterilization of surfaces of dental implants that are diseased or failing. The effects of laser irradiation in vitro (1) on the surface properties of plasma-sprayed titanium and plasma-sprayed hydroxyapatite-coated titanium dental implants, and (2) on the potential to sterilize those surfaces after contamination with spores of Bacillus subtilis have been examined. Surface effects were examined by scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy, and x-ray diffraction after laser irradiation at 0.3, 2.0, and 3.0 W using either contact or noncontact handpieces. Controls received no laser irradiation. Melting, loss of porosity, and other surface alterations were observed on both types of implants, even with the lowest power setting. For the sterilization study, both types of implants were first sterilized by exposure to ethylene oxide and then contaminated with spores of B subtilis. After laser irradiation, the implants were transferred to sterile growth medium and incubated. Laser irradiation did not sterilize either type of implant. The spore-contaminated implants in the control group were successfully sterilized with ethylene oxide.

Keywords: implant, Nd:YAG dental laser, surface alteration, sterilization