Optical analysis of enamel and dentin caries in relation to mineral density using swept-source optical coherence tomography

Tomoka Ueno, Yasushi Shimada, Khairul Matin, Yuan Zhou, Ikumi Wada, Alireza Sadr, Yasunori Sumi, Junji Tagami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to evaluate the signal intensity and signal attenuation of swept source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT) for dental caries in relation to the variation of mineral density. SS-OCT observation was performed on the enamel and dentin artificial demineralization and on natural caries. The artificial caries model on enamel and dentin surfaces was created using Streptococcus mutans biofilms incubated in an oral biofilm reactor. The lesions were centrally cross sectioned and SS-OCT scans were obtained in two directions to construct a three-dimensional data set, from the lesion surface (sagittal scan) and parallel to the lesion surface (horizontal scan). The integrated signal up to 200 μm in depth (IS200) and the attenuation coefficient (μ) of the enamel and dentin lesions were calculated from the SS-OCT signal in horizontal scans at five locations of lesion depth. The values were compared with the mineral density obtained from transverse microradiography. Both enamel and dentin demineralization showed significantly higher IS200 and μ than the sound tooth substrate from the sagittal scan. Enamel demineralization showed significantly higher IS200 than sound enamel, even with low levels of demineralization. In demineralized dentin, the μ from the horizontal scan consistently trended downward compared to the sound dentin.

Original languageEnglish
Article number035507
JournalJournal of Medical Imaging
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • caries
  • dentin
  • enamel
  • integrated signal
  • optical coherence tomography
  • signal attenuation coefficient

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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