Researchers developing 3D ultrasound device to diagnose dental disease

Researchers at the University of Alberta have secured funding to develop a 3D ultrasound system which would give dentists the ability to diagnose periodontal disease without the use of dental radiographic technology.

Dental Tribune reports that the team developing the device, which is more portable and affordable than CBCT imaging units, hope to eventually provide a commercial version to dentists.

Dr. Paul Major, an orthodontist who is the professor and chair of the School of Dentistry at the University of Alberta, previously used a medical ultrasound unit “to examine the position of bone in patients with malocclusion” but unable to find a device small enough to use in the mouth, developed, with his team, a 2D image-capable unit which it is hoped the new funding will allow to become 3D-imaging enabled.

The development of the device will, says principal investigator Prof. Lawrence Le from the university’s Department of Radiology and Diagnostic Imaging, “allow the researchers to examine a patient’s teeth and gingivae from different angles and to view soft tissue, blood flow and bone” but Prof. Paul Major also notes another important plus point with the device which would expose patients to radiation.

“The opportunity to image tissues without radiation exposure is seen as a major advancement.”

It is envisaged that once clinical trials have been completed that the device “will be used to guide dental implant design, monitor oral lesions and potentially diagnose cavities.”

For the full story, go to “Researchers developing 3D ultrasound system for accurate, safe diagnosis of dental disease”

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