Radiographic Examination in the ICCMSTM

There is a unanimous agreement that more caries lesions can be identified by combining radiographic information with clinical findings, compared to visual inspection alone. For this reason, ICCMS™ recommends the inclusion of radiographic examination, if possible and appropriate based on local safety standards. Radiographic examination is useful to confirm the extent of caries, to detect lesions where visual examination of the tooth surface is hampered and to serve as an aid in making appropriate clinical decisions.

Table 6. The ICCMS™ Radiographical Scoring System
(Initial Stages)
1Radiolucency in the outer ½ of the enamel
2Radiolucency in the outer ½ of enamel ± EDJ
3Radiolucency limited to the outer 1/3 of dentin
(Moderate Stages)
4Radiolucency reaching the middle 1/3 of dentin
(Extensive Stages)
5Radiolucency reaching the inner 1/3 of dentin, clinically cavitated
6Radiolucency into the pulp, clinically cavitated

In addition to the use of radiographic evaluation, the ICCMS™ recognizes the potential benefits that can be gained by the use of additional, supplemental detection aids as a means of enhancing caries detection. These can include Fiber-optic Transillumination (FOTI), electrical conductivity measures and optical fluorescence techniques and are briefly discussed later in this course.