Abstract-The purpose of this study was to evaluate the possibilityof using natural frequency ~NF! analysis to detect theattachment loss of periodontal tissue. In this study, 698 anteriorteeth were examined by a conventional probing method andalso by NF analysis. The teeth were triggered to vibrate with animpulse hammer, and the vibrational response was detected byan acoustic sensor. Our results demonstrate no significant differencein NF values between the upper-lower/left-right quadrantsof the tested teeth, although the mean natural frequencyvalue of central incisors with periodontal disease was found tobe 1.2460.11 kHz which is significantly lower than that ofteeth in a healthy condition (1.3460.20 kHz; p,0.01). On theother hand, the mean frequency for periodontal disease involvingcanines (1.2860.09 kHz) was also significantly lower thanthe corresponding value for healthy analogs (1.3560.17 kHz;p,0.05). These results suggest that NF analysis appears to bean effective method for assessing the periodontal condition ofanterior teeth. Moreover, since this method is noninvasive, nondestructive, and necessitates minimal tooth contact, it can serveas an effective method for the early quantifiable testing and prevention of periodontal disease. 2001 copyright Biomedical Engineering Society.
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