Author(s): Lepri TP, SouzaGabriel AE, Atoui JA, PalmaDibb RG, Pcora JD
BACKGROUND: Salivary contamination is one of the factors that can disturb the sealing process and interfere in the longevity of pit and fissure sealants. Erbium : yttrium-aluminum-garnet (Er : YAG) laser could influence the bond strength of enamel and increase the acid resistance.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the influence of Er : YAG laser on the shear bond strength of a sealant to a salivary contaminated enamel surface.
METHODS: Twenty-four third molars had the roots sectioned 2 mm coronal to the cementoenamel junction. The crowns were mesiodistally sectioned providing 48 halves that were embedded in polyester resin. Enamel was flattened and a 2-mm diameter bonding area was demarcated. Specimens were randomly assigned to two groups according to the superficial pretreatment-37% phosphoric acid (A) and Er : YAG laser (80 mJ/2 Hz) + phosphoric acid (L), which were subdivided into two groups (N = 12), without salivary contamination (C) and with salivary contamination (SC). To contaminate the specimens, 0.25 mL of human fresh saliva was applied for 20 seconds and then dried. Fluroshield sealant was applied in all specimens. After storage, shear bond strength of samples were tested in a universal testing machine. RESULTS: Means in MPa were: AC-14.61 (+/-2.52); ASC-6.66 (+/-2.34); LC-11.91 (+/-1.34); and LSC-2.22 (+/-0.66). Statistical analysis revealed that surfaces without salivary contamination and with acid treatment had the highest mean (p < 0.05). The group with salivary contamination treated by Er : YAG laser followed by phosphoric acid application presented the lowest bond values (p < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: The phosphoric acid etching under dry condition yielded better bonding performance. Er : YAG laser was not able to increase the effectiveness of conventional acid etching of enamel in the bond of sealants in both dry and wet conditions.
CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Under the conditions of this study, the conventional etching protocol (phosphoric acid without salivary contamination) is still preferable to laser-conditioning enamel surface prior to sealant application.