A method of utilizing the subjects' initial caries experience to increase efficiency in caries clinical trials
Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology 7(2): 87-90
ISSN/ISBN: 0301-5661 PMID: 371908 DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0528.1979.tb01191.x
A problem which often occurs in caries clinical trials is the existence of an imbalance by group in the initial DMFS [decayed-missing-fixed surfaces] scores among subjects completing the study. Four methods of incorporating the study subjects' initial caries experience were identified and compared in 6 recently conducted clinical trials to see which of the methods was the most efficient in making treatment group comparisons of study subjects' caries increment scores. The consistent method of choice was one which utilized an adaptation of Grainger's caries severity index as a stratification factor in a blocking analysis of caries increments. More information regarding future caries exists in knowing where decay is present in the dentition than in knowing the subjects' total DMFS counts.