Oral surgical handpiece use time parameters

Howard W. Roberts, Mark E. Cohen, David F. Murchison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate the clinical usage time parameters of handpieces used in oral surgical procedures. Method and Materials: One hundred randomly selected clinical oral surgery exodontia procedures were timed to record lengths of continuous segments of both handpiece use and non-usage. Providers with experience ranging from general dentists to board certified oral surgeons were timed during surgical exodontia treatment involving 1 to 4 teeth of various complexities. Usage times were compared with manufacturers' recommendations that on times should not exceed 20 seconds in any 50-second interval (20/50 rule). Results: Handpiece run time increased with the number of teeth and surgical case complexity (both P < .001) but was unrelated to operator experience (P = .763), in a 3-predictor model (R2 = 0.20; P < .001). Ninety-four of the 100 cases experienced at least 1 second in violation of the 20/50 rule and 42% of all run seconds were in violation. Conclusion: Clinicians should be aware of recommended handpiece duty use cycles. Manufacturers' recommendations about handpiece use time cycles do not reflect actual clinical usage. Under the conditions of this study, actual surgical handpiece use time was not correlated with user experience. Less experienced providers did require longer to complete treatment, but increased treatment times were due to time spent that did not require surgical handpiece use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)957-960
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oral Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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