Prevalence of white spot lesions and gingival index during orthodontic treatment in an academic setting

Lina Sharab, Carli Loss, David Jensen, G. Thomas Kluemper, Mutlaq Alotaibi, Hiroko Nagaoka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Introduction: The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of white spot lesions (WSL) in orthodontic patients in an academic setting. Specific aims include using a novel combination to measure plaque accumulation (PA) and detect the association between WSL and PA and the associations between multiple independent variables. Methods: Cross-sectional data were collected on 111 patients. To enhance standardization, a combination of plaque-disclosing agents and standardized intraoral photographs was used to analyze plaque index (PI) and WSL for all teeth except molars. Factors including time in fixed appliances (FA), number of teeth, location of the lesions, and demographic information were reported. A multiple linear regression model was used to detect associations between the PI and WSL and the independent variables (P <0.05). Results: Approximately 79.3% of participants had at least one WSL, with a mean of 4 affected teeth per patient. A significant association was found between time in FA and the more severe PI reporting (P <0.001). There was no significant association between WSL and PI or the other variables. WSL was greater in the maxilla than in the mandible. PI was greater on the left than on the right side. Interexaminer reliability was assessed for PI and WSL (κ = 0.93 and 0.92). Conclusions: The prevalence of WSL for orthodontic patients treated at this institution was greater than previously reported in the literature. In addition, the severity of PI was associated with increased time in FAs. Combining the proposed method of reporting PA facilitates standardization, calibration, and documentation in an academic environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)835-842
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2023

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© 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthodontics


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