Specificity and Sensitivity of the ICDASTM System versus the DMFT Index in Caries Detection

2020 • Volume 14 • Issue 1

Marcial Guiñez Coelho & Gabriela Letelier Sepúlveda



Untreated dental caries is the most frequent chronic disease in adults and untreated caries in primary teeth is the tenth most frequent chronic disease. In Chile, adults have an average DMFT between 3.76-22.16, but the studies are not in a representative population and there are no comparative studies between dmft/DMFT and ICDASTM. Worldwide, its prevalence can reach 100 % of the population studied. The objective of the study was to evaluate if there are differences in the sensitivity and specificity in the detection of caries using ICDASTM and dmft/DMFT. A qualitative systematic review was done, carrying out a search on the dmft/DMFT index and the ICDASTM system, both in Chile and worldwide, in the Medline, ClinicalKey and SciELO databases, finding 3,581, of which, 21 were read completely and 14 met the inclusion and exclusion criteria. The sensitivity and specificity is greater with ICDASTM than with the dmft/DMFT index and delivers up to 43 % more information when detecting non-cavitated lesions, but it needs more time for its realization and more resources because it needs to use light, compressed air and prophylaxis before the examination. Previous training, knowledge and experience in ICDASTM are fundamental for the best results. Studies showed that the greater the experience, the sensitivity and specificity increased, unlike the dmft/DMFT index. More comparative studies should be conducted between both indexes and include ICDASTM in children for their ability to detect non-cavitated lesions, which are the most prevalent in temporary teeth.

KEY WORDS: ICDAS, dmft, DMFT, caries, diagnosis, sensitivity, specificity.


How to cite this article

GUIÑEZ, C. M. & LETELIER, S. G. Specificity and sensitivity of the ICDASTM system versus the DMFT index in caries detection. Int. J. Odontostomat., 14(1):12-18, 2020.


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